HERBS

PULMONARY TUBERCULOSIS

ABOUT THE DISEASE

It is an infectious disease that affects the lungs.

Causative organism – Mycobacterium tuberculosis.

Mode of transmission – Aerosol droplet transmission though coughs, sneeze, spit, laughing or talking.

Though it is a contagious disease but it does not infect everyone, people with low immunity are at most risk of developing active tuberculosis.

People infected with HIV have very weak immune system, hence HIV patients are more likely to develop TB at later stages.

PATHOGENESIS

Through droplet transmission the TB bacterium reaches the lungs and invades the pulmonary alveoli.

The primary site of infection is called the “Ghon’s focus” which is located either in the mid zone or lower zone of the lung.

Tuberculosis infection of the lungs may also occur via the infected blood, in such case lesion is generally found on the top of the lung and is called “simon’s focus”.

Tuberculosis is a granulomatous inflammatory disease in which Macrophages, lymphocytes & fibroblasts aggregate around the infected cell to form Granuloma.

The granuloma has soft and white cheesy texture therefore it is termed as Caseous.

SYMPTOMS

  • Persistent Cough for about 3 or 4 weeks, sometimes with mucus, sometimes mixed with blood.
  • Fever with rise in temperature in evening hours.
  • Loss of weight
  • Night sweats
  • Loss of appetite
  • General weakness

TREATMENT

The main treatment comprises of Anti tubercular drugs of which six are essential – Rifampicin, Pyrazinamide, Isoniazide, Streptomycin, Ethambutol & Thioacetazone. The treatment duration is of 6-9 months.

However many strains of TB causing bacteria have become resistant towards the drugs and lead to Multidrug Resistant TB (MDR-TB) which is a serious concern.

AYURVEDIC VIEW

In Ayurveda the TB can be correlated with disease “Rajyakshma” which has following synonyms - “Shosh” which means to dry, “Kshaya” which means to cause destruction and “rajroga” means king of all the diseases.

These all synonyms fit very well with the effects of disease on the body.

CAUSES

The four main etiological factors described by Acharya charak are as follows:

1. Vegavrodh (suppression of natural urges) - Holding and suppressing natural urges like Defaecation, urination, sneezing, vomiting, Hunger, tears, Sleep etc lead to aggravation of vata dosha in the body which leads to consumption of Dhatus (Tissues of the body) and hence emaciation of body. The Aggravated vata dosha also leads to derangement of Agni (digestive process) which causes low metabolic activity and vitiation of all three doshas in body which again leads to low immunity and weak body. Thus, body becomes more vulnerable to get infected with TB bacterium.

2. Kshaya (Degeneration) – Involvement in activities which lead to physical and mental exhaustion like overindulgence in sexual activities, doing crash dieting, stress, depression, chronic alcoholism, insomnia, excessive blood or stool or semen loss from body or due to any reason which lead to weakness or degeneration of body tissues making the body susceptible to opportunistic infection.

3. Sahas( excessive exertion) – It means doing activities more than the physical capacity for example - heavy exercises without proper guidance and nutrition. This leads to internal injuries inside the body and makes the body weak and fragile which easily gets infected.

4. Visham Ashana (uneven dietary combinations and malnutrition) - Improper diet, improper food timings, improper dietary combinations lead to Agnimandya or poor metabolism which leads to Aam formation (toxin accumulation) and blockages of pathways carrying the nutrition to the body cells which in turn creates malnutrition to the body. A malnourished provides direct invitation for infectious diseases due to low defence support system.

Acharya Sushruta has directly described this disease as contagious disorder for the first time.

Pathogenesis

This disease occurs in two types:-

1) Due to etiological factors, vitiation of all three doshas viz. Vata, Pitta and Kapha occur at the same time and cause blockage in all the channels carrying nutritive juices to all the dhatus (tissues) of the body. This results in malnutrition of all seven dhatus i.e., Rasa, Rakta, Mamsa, Meda, Asthi, Majja and Shukra. This is termed as Anuloma Kshaya.

2) In Pratiloma Kshaya, the wasting of Shukra dhatu (Semen) takes place which lead to gradual emaciation of body.

SYMPTOMS

Acharya Charaka has mentioned six main symptoms of Rajyakshma

  • Cough
  • Fever
  • Chest pain
  • Hoarseness of voice
  • Diarrhoea
  • Anorexia

These six symptoms are called as Shadrupa Rajyakshma.

The disease is curable if patient possess following traits

  • Afebrile
  • Good immunity
  • Able to handle therapeutic procedures
  • Patient towards treatment and its outcome
  • Good appetite and digestion
  • Physically well built

PRINCIPLES OF TREATMENT

The main factor in this disease is blockage of channels due to aam so the first line of treatment should be Deepana Pachana and Srotoshodhan. All three doshas should be treated in this disease (Tridoshshamak Chikitsa). Treatment then should be directed towards improving the physical health of patient which is called as Santarpana Chikitsa.

MANAGEMENT

1. If Diagnosed with Pulmonary Tuberculosis then Anti tubercular treatment for 6-9 months should be taken.

2. Ayurvedic Treatment in Tuberculosis can be given to improve the general health and immunity of the patient and to overcome the side effects of Anti tubercular drugs.

3. Since this disease presents multiple symptoms therefore symptomatic treatment should also be given.

4. Meat protein is very good for the disease if patient is non vegetarian.

5. In case the patient is vegetarian, then take lot of protein rich diet like Dal, Paneer, Milk, Almonds, Walnut, Peanuts etc.

6. Take good rest and drink plenty of water.

7. If suffering from Diarrhoea, it has to be treated at the right time. Acharyas also mentioned Purish Sanrakshan (Protection from diarrhoea) as main part of Rajyakshma treatment.

8. Single Herbs – Pippali (Piper longum), Bala (Sida cordifolia), Ashwagandha (Withania somnifera), Guduchi (Tinospora cordifolia), Draksha (Vitis vinifera).

9. Herbal combinations – Sitopladi churna, Talisyadi churna, Jambawadi churna, Yawani shadav, Karpooradi churna, Eladi churna, Ashwagandhadi churna, Drakshadi churna.

10. Ghee combinations – Dashmooladi Ghrita, Panchmoola Ghrita.

11. Oil preparation for massage – Chandanadi taila, Lakshadi taila.

12. Awaleha (lickable preparations) – Chyawanprash, Vasa awaleha, Sarpi guda.

13. Aswa and arishta (Alcohol based preparations)- Draksharishta, Drakshasawa, Kharjurasawa.

14. Herbo mineral preparations – Shiva Gutika, Shilajatwadi lauha, Rajmrigank rasa, Vasantkusumakar rasa, Chintamani rasa, Chandramrit rasa.

HOME REMEDIES

1. Take cow ghee and Tila oil in equal quantity and do regular Body massage in the morning this will help in rejuvenation of body muscles.

2. For cough and fever, take paste of Dates and Raisins along with pepper powder, sugar powder and Honey in equal quantity, add ghee one fourth quantity of honey. Regular intake of this combination is helpful in cough and fever symptoms of TB.

3. If suffering from diarrhoea take Jamun seed Powder, Mango kernels powder (Aam ki giri) and dried Bael Powder (unripe Bael fruit) in equal quantities. Take this powder with rice water (Maand).

4. If suffering from tasteless feeling or altered taste in mouth take cinnamon powder, Black cardamum powder, coriander powder. Boil this combination of powder in water and gargle with luke warm decoction. In many cases people suffer from altered taste as a side effect of anti tubercular treatment, in such cases this home remedy is very useful.

Disclaimer

The purpose of Ayurvidya is to promote broad consumer understanding and knowledge of various health topics. It is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health care provider regarding your medical condition or treatment and before undertaking any new health care regimen.