Table 3: Implementation of randomized controlled trials on AA for chronic LBP.

StudiesTaped objectsSelected ear points (number) Main ear points (M) and adjunct ear points (A)Acupoint detectionManual pressingUsing ears alternatelyDuration/follow-up

Lu et al. 2015SVM(7): liver, kidney, waist, lumbar, sacrum, cortex, and ShenmenA(5): adrenal gland, popliteal space, liver, lung, and spleenProbe20 min/day for a total of 20 cycles/time per acupoint until de qi12 weeks (3-4 days/session)/NM
Suen et al. 2007E: magnetic pellet C: SVM(7): Shenmen, kidney, urinary bladder, lumbosacral vertebrae, buttock, liver, and spleenElectronicNo manual pressure exerted3 weeks (3 days/session)/at two and four weeks
Wang 2015SVM(7): liver, kidney, waist, lumbar, sacrum, cortex, and ShenmenA(5): adrenal gland, popliteal space, liver, lung, and spleenProbe20 min/day for a total of 20 cycles/time per acupoint until de qi12 weeks (3-4 days/session)/NM
Xia et al. 2011SVM(6): Ashi point, lumbosacral vertebrae, kidney, liver, Shenmen, and subcortexNM3 times/day for a total of 3–5 min/time until de qi2 weeks (3-4 days/session)/NM
Yeh et al. 2013SVM(4): Shenmen, sympathetic, nervous subcortex, lower backElectronic≥3 times/day for 3 min/time and 3 minutes whenever experiencing painNo4 weeks (5 days/session)/1 month
Yeh et al. 2014SVM(7): Shenmen, sympathetic, nervous subcortex, popliteal fossa, groove of spinal posterior, sciatic nerve, lumbosacralElectronic≥3 times/day for 3 min/time and 3 minutes whenever experiencing painNo4 weeks (5 days/session)/1 month
Yeh et al. 2015SVM(4): Shenmen, sympathetic, nervous subcortex, two zones for lower back which located on the front and back of the earElectronic≥3 times/day for 3 min/time and 3 minutes whenever experiencing painNo4 weeks (5 days/session)/NM

AA, auricular acupressure; LBP, low back pain; SV, Semen vaccariae; De qi refers to patient’s subjective feelings of soreness, numbness, distention, heaviness, or hotness; NM, not mentioned.