Abstract ID: 1153

Primary Topic: Whole systems and acupuncture (including TCM and Ayurveda)
Secondary Topic: Integrative medicine delivery models

Assessment of the analgesic properties of auriculotherapy in patients undergoing carpal tunnel surgery.
Carine Chaix-Couturier, MD, PhD, 3c-sante, Meudon, France; Christian couturier, MD, Clinique Arago Paris, Paris, France; Henri Weckmans, MD, Clinic ARAGO, Paris, France, France

Late Breaker: Yes


Effective perioperative pain management of patients undergoing hand surgery is critical because of the risk of postoperative of algodystrophy. In the present context of increase concerns of opioid addiction associated with surgery, increase considerations have been given to the use of complementary approaches including Auriculotherapy (AT) for perioperative pain management. This study was designed to assess the analgesic properties of AT in patients undergoing carpal tunnel surgery.

Methods/Session Format

Thirty-eight patients (nineteen per group) scheduled for carpal tunnel surgery were enrolled in this patient-anesthesiologist-surgeon-blinded study. The patients were randomly assigned to receive either active AT (group 1) or placebo AT (GROUP2)using a cryopuncture technique . In each patient, four ear points were treated including hand master point (B4), stellar ganglion (F10), C7 radiculomere (B10) and thalamus (G14) ipsilateral to surgery site and one point on the contralateral ear (cosmonaute (F6)).

The primary outcome was the area under the curve of the pain using visual analogue scale (VAS) at day 1, day 2, day 3. The secondary outcome was the opioids consumption at day 1, day 2, day 3 and the request of analgesics at J21. Finally the surgeon was asked to rate the quality of the postoperative pain using a 3 level scale.


The use of AT was associated with a significant decrease in postoperative pain.

 Graphique attached below

POD# 1, 2 and 3 was 1, 0.7 and 0.8, respectively in group 1 VS 3, 2 and 0.6 in group 2 (p<0.005). Postoperative analgesic consumption was similar in both group. At 21 days, no patient required any analgesic medication. 


This preliminary study suggest that Auriculotherapy represent an effective complementary approach to control postoperative pain following carpal tunnel. Further investigation are required to confirm these finding