[Auricular acupuncture for primary insomnia: a systematic review based on GRADE system]

Zhongguo Zhen Jiu. 2014 Jul;34(7):726-30.
[Article in Chinese]


The clinical efficacy and safety of auricular acupuncture (AA) for treatment of primary insomnia was evaluated. After a comprehensive retrieval in domestic and foreign databases, literatures were strictly screened and Revman 5.2 software was applied to perform a Meta-analysis on eligible randomized controlled trials (RCTs). The evidence quality was assessed with GRADE profiler 3.6 software. As a result, 8 articles were included involving 894 patients. Compared among AA and sham AA, placebo AA, blank control, there was significant difference in Pittsburgh sleep quality index (PSQI) [WMD = -3.48, 95% CI (-3.96, -3.00)], sleep latency LWMD = -10.14, 95% CI (-17.16, -3.12)] and sleep awakening times [WMD = -9.98, 95% CI (-1.10,-0.48)]. Compared between AA and western medication, there was significant difference in PSQI [WMD = -3.62, 95% CI (-4.59, -2.65)]. The evidence quality was moderate in AA vs. sham AA, placebo AA or blank control, while that of the rest was extremely low. No reports of adverse events were described in all studies. In conclusion, for the treatment of primary insomnia, AA could effectively improve sleep quality, but due to the low evidence quality, cautious attitude should be taken on this conclusion, and clinical trials with large sample and high quality were needed in the further.

Publication types

  • Meta-Analysis
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review
  • Systematic Review

MeSH terms

  • Acupuncture, Ear*
  • Humans
  • Randomized Controlled Trials as Topic
  • Sleep
  • Sleep Initiation and Maintenance Disorders / physiopathology
  • Sleep Initiation and Maintenance Disorders / therapy*