Auricular Acupressure May Relieve Neuropathy in Breast Cance
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Auricular acupressure can reduce chemotherapy-induced peripheral neuropathy (CIPN) symptoms following breast cancer treatment, South Korean researchers reported.

Chemotherapy-induced peripheral neuropathy (CIPN) is commonly reported as acute or prolonged symptoms in breast cancer patients treated with antineoplastic agents such as taxanes. This study aimed to evaluate the effect of Auricular acupressure (AA) on peripheral neuropathic symptoms in chemotherapy-treated breast cancer patients.

This study is randomized, double-blind, sham-controlled trial (RCT) of 44 eligible patients who were randomly assigned to the experimental AA or sham AA group. The final sample included 38 patients. The duration of the AA intervention was 3 weeks with weekly cycles. Each weekly cycle included one visit, 5-day AA application, and 2-day rest period. All participants were instructed to apply pressing technique to the targeted ear points. CIPN symptoms were evaluated before, during, and immediately after intervention by using patient-reported outcomes and physician-assessed test scores. Safety was confirmed via routine monitoring during and after intervention.

The outcomes were;
--The experimental AA group showed significantly greater improvement in patient-reported symptoms in upper and lower extremities than the sham AA group over time.

--A significant group by time interaction was found, indicating that this intervention developed in the study was effective in managing CIPN symptoms.

--Also, the experimental AA group showed a wide difference in physician-assessed test scores between pre- and post-assessment compared to the sham AA group. However, this difference remained at an insignificant level.

Conclusively, auricular acupressure has beneficial effects on symptom management in patients with peripheral neuropathic symptoms after chemotherapy for breast cancer.

Oncology Nursing Society