Ayurvedic Analgesics
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One of the most widely used categories of medicines is analgesic or pain killers. This type of medicine are used at every instance, either it is traumatic conditions or other complications. In ayurveda the term analgesic is coined as vedanahasthapak (means that which relieves pain). The author of chukradutta text, Chakrapani in his text describes that drugs that relieves the pain and bring back the body at rest are called vedanasthapak. Generally they can be said as painkillers. Ayurveda states that the pain is due to vata and it needs to be decreased either by Sanshodhanam (elimination) or shanshamana (suppressing the cause).

As per modern classification these are two categories of analgesics

(a) Non-narcotics

(b) Narcotics.

The basic principle of painkiller is that they break the message transmitted from the affected part to the brain through the neurons. This means that the analgesics either break the pain signals arriving from the body part to the brain or interrupt the brain to receive the message by neurons transmitting the pain signal. This is like just

Again there are local and central analgesics as per their use. The analgesic category of medicine according to Ayurveda is not much described because there are no fast acting painkillers. The clear distinction between the narcotic and non-narcotic analgesic is not seen in the ayurveda related text. The drugs are classified as per their action.

The Susruta Samhita describes about the teekshna Madhya (liquors) bhanga (cannabis sativa). The analgesics all defines in ayurveda are scattered and fall under different categories like anagamarda prasahamana (body ache reliever), Madak (hypnotic) and Nidrakar (sedatives).

The major analgesics in ayurveda are-

Local Analgesics: - These are used locally. Normally they are made paste and applied to the affected part. Several medicaments, which are used locally, are prepared for analgesic purpose like the pradeha (embrocating body paint), pralepa (same as pradeha).

  • Belladonna,
  • Dhustur,
  • Vatsnabha,
  • Kalihari.

Central Analgesics: - These drugs are used for parental use. Generally the diet preparations as described in the Charka Samhita are used to medicate with these herbs. These drugs are acting on the central nervous system. They have pharmacological properties to serve as analgesic.

(1) Agru,

(2) Kapitha,

(3) Ahiphena,

(4) Daruharidra,

(5) Shatpushpa,

(6) Ashoka,

(7) Shalmali,

(8)Yashti madhu,

(9) Bhallatak,

(10) Punnankeshar,

(11) Parseek yavani,

(12) Sushitha,

(13) Dendaru,

(14) Katphala,

(15) Shal,

(16) Haridra,

(17) Kadamb,

(18) Dhatura,

(19) Gandhaprasarni,

(20) Priyangu,

(21) Latakasturi.

Angmarda prashaman (Body ache): - These medicines are used to relieve body pain. Generally they are used as pradeha, pralepa and other process. They are used to relieve body pain. They normally relieve body fatigue and stress.

  • Shalparni,
  • Prishtaparni,
  • Brihati (both),
  • Arand,
  • Chandan,
  • Usheer,
  • Ela,
  • Madhuyashti.

Susruta described a class by name of vatashanashan (that which destroys vata). The vata entity is responsible for the pain and its sensation according to ayurveda. Susruta Samhita describes the vatanashan category, which includes following drugs –

  • Meshshringi,
  • Balam,
  • Atibala,
  • Aartgal,
  • Kapikachhu,
  • Patala,
  • Agnimantha,
  • Gaduchi,
  • Shatavari,
  • Punarnava,
  • Vasuk,
  • Bharangi,

In ayurveda there are different drugs that have analgesic properties. Apart from these the Vidaradigandhi Gana (drugs of vidaradi group) drug, Dashumula (the ten drugs), Shula Prashaman (the medicine that are used as analgesic), Samgrahi (astringents), Shramahara (stress reliever), Kriyahara (the medicines that reduces the action of pain), Madak gana (hypnotic group of medicines) are also analgesic in properties.

The major drugs of these classes are as under: -

  • Shula prashaman: -
  • Pippali,
  • Pipplimula,
  • Chavya,
  • Chitrak,
  • Nagkesar,
  • Mirch,
  • Ajmoda,
  • Yavani,
  • Jeerak and
  • Gardir.
  • Shramahar: -
  • Draksha,
  • Kharjur,
  • Priyal,
  • Badar,
  • Dadim,
  • Parushak,
  • Dutika / Kshuyava and
  • Vidaradi Gana: -
  • Shaliparni,
  • Prishtaparni,
  • Vidari,
  • Nagbala,
  • Sahadevi,
  • Gokshur,
  • Shatavari,
  • Knatika,
  • Krishnasariva,
  • Jeebhak
  • Rishabak,
  • Mashparvi,
  • Mugdaparni,
  • Brihatidya,
  • Punurnava,
  • Arand,
  • Hansapadi,
  • Kapikachhu.

(4) Madak and Nidrakar: -

  • Ahiphena,
  • Bhang,
  • Ganja,
  • Akararabha,
  • Khurasani ajuwayan,
  • Pipplamula,
  • Sarpagandha,
  • Upodika,
  • Kasturi,
  • Dhustur.

Apart from these drugs the process used as vednasthapak are: -

  • Ushnaseveda,
  • Sheetasweda,
  • Raktamokshan,
  • Jalauka,
  • Pralepa,
  • Pradeha
  • Taila
  • Malhar
  • Dhum prayoga.

The following mercuric preparations are taken as analgesic medicines.

  • Chaturmukha Rasa
  • Krishna Chaturnukla Rasa
  • Vata Chintamani
  • Brihta Vata Chintamani
  • Makardhawaja
  • Rasa Sindoor
  • Swarna Sindoor
  • Yogendra Rasa

Balarishta, Dashnulasishta, and drakshasava are fermented preparation used for analgesic purpose. These are certain analgesic category drugs that are used in ayurveda by practitioners as per need and conditions of the patients.

 

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