Application Of Auricular Therapy For Cancer-Related Pain In Nursing Care | OMICS International | Abstract
ISSN: 2167-0846

Journal of Pain & Relief
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Review Article

Application Of Auricular Therapy For Cancer-Related Pain In Nursing Care

Yeh CH1*, Chien LC2 and Suen LKP3
1School of Nursing, University of Pittsburgh, USA
2Division of Biostatistics, University of Texas, School of Public Health at San Antonio Regional Campus; Research to Advance Community Health Center, USA
3School of Nursing, Hong Kong Polytechnic University, Hong Kong
Corresponding Author : Chao Hsing Yeh, RN, PhD
School of Nursing, University of Pittsburgh
3500 Victoria Street, 440 Victoria Building
Pittsburgh, PA 15261, USA
Tel: 412 648 9259
Fax: 412 624 8521
E-mail: [email protected]
Received February 24, 2014; Accepted March 10, 2014; Published March 12, 2014
Citation: Yeh CH, Chien LC, Suen LKP (2014) Application of Auricular Therapy for Cancer-related Pain in Nursing Care. J Pain Relief 3:139. doi: 10.4172/2167-0846.1000139
Copyright: © 2014 Yeh CH, et al. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.


Regardless of the advances in cancer treatment, cancer-related pain is still one of the most challenging symptoms that patients face. In the United States, cancer patients have turned to a wide variety of complementary and alternative medicine (CAM) therapies as an adjunct to conventional cancer treatments. This paper introduces Auricular Point Acupressure (APA), an innovative acupuncture technique that (1) features the use of seed patches instead of needles and (2) treats only the acupoints located on the surface of the ear. The technique not only offers a less invasive alternative to acupuncture, but also can be self-managed—the patient is instructed to press the points on which the patches have been placed at regular intervals and as needed to decrease pain. As a non-invasive, semi-self-managed, non-pharmacological technique for pain relief, APA has minimal side effects and, therefore, may be particularly acceptable to cancer patients. This paper describes the historical development of auricular therapy, auricular therapy treatments, a proposed biological mechanism underlying the analgesic effects of APA, and the implications of APA on nursing practice for cancer-related pain management.