Para-Surgical, however, is a broad term to describe the procedure or treatment modality that works as a surgical procedure but doesn’t use sharp or equipped instruments or medicine. In Ayurveda, there are multiple para-surgical procedures among which a major contribution is by Sushruta Samhita is the basic source of origin, also to modern surgery. Sushruta described the para-surgical procedures and assigned a detailed separate chapter for them. The para-surgical process has gained a major boost in recent times due to its ease of practice and efficacy. These modalities are practicing for thousands of years and have a separate base in routine clinical practice. In Samhitas of Ayurveda, there is abundant literature available regarding the management of diseases with Para surgical modalities, this article shortly introduces some of them i.e. Agni karma, kshara karma, jalokaavacharan.
Superiority over surgical procedures
These procedures are somehow superior to surgical procedures as follows.
- These are less invasive than an actual surgical procedure.
- Doesn’t need hospitalization.
- Not as hectic as a surgical procedure
- Doesn’t interfere with the life process of an individual.
- day-care procedure.
- doesn’t need specialized experts, equipment, and space.
- usable in children, old age people, pregnant women, and co-morbid patients.
Agni karma is the most superior para-surgical modality in the context of action. It is a conventional method, in the Himalayan region as Tau Dam to treat diseases like the Liver, stomach, and the low back disc in regular practice. Agni karma is a superficial therapeutic burn, that used-hot hot metallic rods to treat mainly pain-related complaints. Sushruta stated numerous methods, the material according to the body parts and complaints. It is useful to eradicate the outgrowth on the body like warts, and hardened tissues like in corn. Also used to check to bleed. Cautery in modern surgical practice is another form of Agni karma that changed with time and technology.
Here are some of the materials listed from Sushruta according to the site
- At skin – Goat Dung, Cows horn, long pepper, metallic rode
- For muscle–metallic instruments
- For Bone, joints, and vessels-honey, jaggery, and oil/ghee
Ksharakarama: Caustic application
The use of caustic chemicals prepared from the incarceration of selected herbal drugs and using that material in treating various diseases is called kshara karma. It is usable in various forms like powder kshara Jala( diluted with water), suppository, and medicated thread. It is widely gaining importance as it is superior to other para-surgical modalities in the context of properties. Kshar can act as a cauterizing agent, digestive element, scraping agent, and dressing material in selective wounds. Medicated thread i.e. Kshar sutra is broadly used in managing fistula-in-Ano because it reduces the chances of re-occurrence, it is enriched with the property of cutting and healing both. This provided new hope in treating fistula in Ano, the thread cut the tract, and it also possesses healing power.
Leech therapy is a type of bloodletting widely used to treat skin and blood-related disorders. It is very effective in managing varicose veins, non-healing ulcers, alopecia( loss of hair from the scalp), abnormal pigmentation, or local pathology of the skin, and can be in healthy individuals as regimental therapy. According to the concept of Ayurveda Leech sucks the impure blood which then after the body compensates itself with pure blood reverses the pathology of related disorders. Multiple types and their morphological characteristics to identify usable and non-usable leeches are available in Sushruta Samhita.
The process of leech needs the supervision of an expert sometimes their bite may cause an allergic reaction in the patients and may have local and systematic complications. A separate leech, for every patient to avoid transmission of disease from one individual to another. These can be reusable on the same individual with an interval of one week. The count of leeches applied depends on the severity of the disease and the condition of the patient.
Need for an hour
There is a need for an hour to raise the popularity and practice of these procedures. These are beneficial to both, practitioners as well as patients. Cost-effective, efficacy, and safety make these, more reliable, and convenient rather than an intake of chemically derived medicines and a hectic surgical procedure.