RHEUMATOID ARTHRITIS AND AYURVEDA
RA is a chronic ,systemic inflammatory disorder that may affect tissue and principally affects synovial joints.
It is a symmetrical ,deforming ,small and large polyarthritis often associated with systemic disturbances and extra articular disease.
RA common presentation is gradual onset of symmetrical arthralgia, synovitis of small joints of hands, feet and wrist. OR acute onset just over few days with morning stiffness, polyarthritis, pitting oedema.
Non articular symptoms are fever, weight loss, fatigue, muscle wasting, Anaemia , osteoporosis,pericarditis/endocarditis/myocarditis.
Detail medical history, physical examination.
Laboratory investigation like RA factor, ESR, C-reactive protein, antinuclear antibody(ANA) and complete blood count(CBC).
The exact cause of RA is not known but this has been recognized as autoimmune disorder.
In Ayurveda, RA is described as Aamavata and its cause is very well explained .The term amavata is derived from two word `ama’ and vata.
Ama is caused by imbalance of doshas resulted from indigestion due to imbalanced food and lifestyle, lowered agni(basic metabolic rate),sedentary work, over exertion involving lots of joint movements.
The toxin Ama is carried by imbalanced vata to kapha sthana especially joint etc.This toxin becomes sticky due to imbalanced doshas and blocks the vital channels which nourish the body. The ama which gets lounged in joints act like foreign body and triggers immune system.This leads to inflammation of linning of joints
Treatment through Ayurveda
Ayurvedic management for aamavata can be categorized into 3
1. Shodhana/panchakarma therapy(complete detoxification)
They are snehanam,swedanam,virechanam and vasti has found significantly effective in most subjects. But treatment may differ patient wise considering his /her strength and severity of disease.
2. Shaman oushadies (internal and external administration of medicines)
Various combination of internal ayurvedic medicines is given along with external therapies like dhanyamla dhara, choornapinda swedam(with sand or herbal powder),abhyangam (oil massage)patrapottali swedam( with herbal leaves) and njavara kizhi.
3. Rasayanoushadies (rejuvenation)
This is given to rejuvenate damaged tissues and prevent frequent relapses and there by regains strength of patient.
So treatment through Ayurveda , apart from alleviation of disease, it enhance process of digestion both at intestinal and cellular level.