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Table 1 Characteristics of included studies (manual acupuncture vs. artificial tears)

From: Optimizing acupuncture treatment for dry eye syndrome: a systematic review

First author Year Site Sample sizea Age Gender (M/F) Regime (acupoints) Duration (min) Frequency (per week) Total sessions Outcomes
Nepp [12] 1998 Austria 52 (30/22) N/A N/A GB1, BL2, ST5, EX-HN2, LI4, SI3, LI3, KI6, TE5 30 1 10 ST, BUT, drop frequency
He [13] 2004 China 32 (16/16) 52 12/20 Pattern identification was done by practitioner (ST2, LI20, LI11, LI4, SP6 OR
ST2, SP10, SP9, SP6, ST36, KI6)
20–25 3–4 (every other day) 30 ST, BUT, CFS
Wang [14] 2005 China 45((A)15, (B)15/15) 51.7 17/28 (A) Pattern identification was done by practitioner (LI11, LI4 SP6, KI3, ST2, LI20 or ST2, SP10, SP9, ST36, SP6, ST40)
(B) BL2, TE23, GB14, ST1
20–25 3–4 (every other day) 20 ST, BUT, CFS, RR
Tseng [15] 2006 Taiwan 26 (17/9) 48.9 12/14 Ex-HN5, TE23, GB14, ST2, SP6 20 2 16 ST, BUT, Number of application of artificial tears
Zhang [16] 2009 China 60 (30/30) 44 23/37 ST1, LR3, KI3 20 N/A N/A ST, BUT, total symptoms
Gong [17] 2010 China 42 (20/22) 44.8 11/33 BL1, BL2, GB14, SJ23, Ex-HN5, ST2, LI4, LR3, GB37, SP6, GB20 20 3 (every other day) 10 ST, BUT, RBS recording, total score
Gao [18] 2010 China 56 (28/28) 48.9 3/53 BL1, BL2, TE23, GB1,Ex-HN5 30 6 24 ST, BUT, total score
Shi [19] 2012 China 68 (33/35) 49.5 30/38 Ex-HN1, BL1, ST1, Ex-HN5, TE23, LI4, ST36 25 3 9 ST, BUT, tear lactoferrin concentration
Kim [20] 2012 Korea 150 (75/75) 42 41/109 BL2, GB14, TE23, Ex-HN5, ST1, GB20, LI4 LI11, GV23 20 3 12 OSDI, VAS, BUT, ST, MYMOP-2
Nan [21] 2014 China 60 (30/30) 48.1 25/35 Eye acupuncture (liver/gallbladder area, kidney area, spleen stomach area, upper jiao area) 15–20 7 20 ST, BUT, total score
Zhang [22] 2015 China 80 (40/40) 53 28/52 Hair needle therapy (superior and inferior lacrimal puncta) 10 3–4 (every other day) 7 ST, BUT, CFS, total score
NI [23] 2016 China 93((A)30, (B)32/31) 33.3 36/57 (A) BL1, Ex-HN7, SP6, KI3, GV26
(B) BL1, Ex-HN7, SP6, KI3
20 3 9 ST BUT, subjective symptom score
Chao [24] 2016 China 53((A)18, (B)19/16) 48.9 15/38 (A), (B) GB20, Ex-HN5, BL2, ST2, LR3, KI3, SP6, SP6, ST36, ST37 (A) applied a qi-absorption needling technique to the GB20 30 7 28 ST, BUT, VAS, CFS total score
Liu [25] 2017 China 28 (14/14) 60.7 0/28 BL2, BL3, TE23, Ex-HN5, ST2, LI4, GB20, GV20, ST1 30 3 24 ST, BUT, OSDI, questionnaire, protein analysis
  1. M/F male/female, ST Schirmer’s test, BUT break-up time, CFS corneal fluorescein staining, RBS Rose-Bengal staining, RR response rate, OSDI ocular surface disease index, a questionnaire
  2. aTotal sample size (number who received manual acupuncture/number who received artificial tears)