Study designs of evaluations included in the review
Randomised controlled trials (RCTs) were eligible for inclusion.
Specific interventions included in the review
Studies of acupuncture, electro-acupuncture or auricular acupuncture that involved needle insertion were eligible for inclusion. The studies were required to use sham acupuncture, conventional premedication or no conventional treatment as the comparator. All of the included studies used body acupuncture; some studies also used ear acupuncture. Acupuncture treatment was started 5 to 20 minutes before endoscopic examination and continued throughout the procedure. Conventional premedication included midazolam, scopolamine and meperidine.
Participants included in the review
Studies of individuals undergoing GI endoscopy were eligible for inclusion. The included participants were undergoing colonoscopy or upper GI endoscopy for diagnosis.
Outcomes assessed in the review
No inclusion criteria were specified. The included studies used a variety of methods to measure pain, discomfort and tolerance of the procedure (details were reported).
How were decisions on the relevance of primary studies made?
The authors did not state how the papers were selected for the review, or how many reviewers performed the selection.