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Complement Ther Med. 2016 Jun;26:61-5. doi: 10.1016/j.ctim.2016.02.006. Epub 2016 Feb 15.

Auricular acupuncture diagnosis in patients with lumbar hernia.

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Center for Integrative Medicine-University of Florence, Italy; Associazione Medici Agopuntori Bolognesi, Bologna, Italy. Electronic address:
Associazione Medici Agopuntori Bolognesi, Bologna, Italy; Center for Pain Therapy-S. Maria Hospital, Bari, Italy.
Department of Statistics, Informatics and Applications-University of Florence, Italy.



Auricular Acupuncture Diagnosis is a diagnostic method which is essential for the topographic identification on the auricle of the anatomical parts of the body carrying a particular ailment or dysfunction.


To identify the specific zones related to lumbar hernia in patients treated with a series of epidural infiltrations with corticosteroids.


In a consecutive group of thirty patients with lumbar hernia 2 diagnostic methods used in Auricular Acupuncture Diagnosis, Pain Pressure Test and Electric Skin Resistance Test, were applied before the first infiltration (T0), before the second and the third infiltration (T1, T2) and one week after the third infiltration (T3). The parameters, whose variations were analyzed at T0-T3, were the following: the number of points identified; the intensity of pain on a verbal rating scale and the foot-hand distance in cm with bent spine and extended knees. The identified points were reported on the Auricular Sectogram which is a validated graphic system suitable for a correct transcription of the points and indicated for a statistical analysis of their distribution on the different sectors.


A significant association was found for some auricular areas, along the series of epidural infiltrations, with a progressive reduction in the number of tender and low electrical resistance points together with a decrease of pain and hand-foot distance.


The auricular zones found with Auricular Acupuncture Diagnosis in our group of patients seem of clinical relevance and could be included in the complementary treatment of lumbar-sciatic pain in lumbar hernia.


Auricular acupuncture diagnosis; Lumbar hernia; Lumbar-sciatic pain

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