"Ear Stapling" Businesses Shut Down

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Officials with the Mississippi Board of Medical Licensure say the action was taken after an investigation into complaints from people suffering from serious ear infections and doctors treating more patients with infections and having to remove the staples.

Officials say the businesses received compensation for offering treatment for obesity and that is practicing medicine without a license.

Ear stapling is a new, popular weight-loss procedure that draws from ancient acupuncture. It is cropping up throughout Mississippi, a state with one of the highest obesity rates in the nation.

In Mississippi, only doctors licensed in acupuncture are allowed to perform acupuncture procedures. Other states allow people with certification besides medical doctors to practice acupuncture.