Sushruta Samhita, Volume 6: Uttara-tantra

by Kaviraj Kunja Lal Bhishagratna | 1916 | 113,078 words

This current book, the Uttara-tantra (english translation) is the supplementary part of the Sushrutasamhita and deals various subjects such as diseases of the eye, treatment of fever, diarrhea, diseases resulting from superhuman influences, insanity, rules of health etc. The Sushruta Samhita is the most representative work of the Hindu system of m...

Chapter IX - Treatment of Vataja Ophthalmia

Now we shall discourse on the remedial measures of Abhishyanda (Ophthalmia) due to the action of the deranged Vayu (Vatabhishyanda-Pratishedha). 1.

The patient should be treated with old and matured clarified butter, both in a case of (Vataja) Abhishyanda (Ophthalmia) and (Vataja) Adhimantha (Conjunctivites). The diseased organ should be then duly[1] fomented and local venesection resorted to. Then after having effected full purging with the help of a Sneha-vasti (oleaginous enema), such measures as Tarpana, Puta-paka, fumigation, sprinklings (Ashchyotana)[2], snuffing (Nasya), oily washings, Siro-vasti (errhines) or washing the organ with Kanjika (Amla) or with any decoction prepared with the drugs of the Vayu-subduing group or with that of the flesh of any aquatic (Jalaja) animal, or of one frequenting the marshy places (Anupa), should be resorted to. A compound consisting of clarified butter, curd, fat and marrow should be applied lukewarm to the affected organ, which should also be covered with a compress or linen soaked with the preceding lardacious compound. Milk, Veshavara, Shalvana Poultice, Porridges (Payasa), etc., should be used by a physician in poulticing the affected organ. A portion of clarified butter cooked with the decoction of Triphala, or simply old and matured clarified butter, or milk duly cooked with the drugs of the Vayu-subduing group, or of the first group (viz., Vidari-Gandhadi Gana) should be taken after the meal. 2. A.

The application of any lardacious substance other than oil cooked with the admixture of the Vayu-sub-duing drugs will prove beneficial for Tarpana purposes in such cases. The use of medicated Sneha in the shape of Putapaka, Dhuma (fumigation) and Nasya (snuffs) is likewise recommended. Oil (duly) cooked with Sthira, milk and the drugs of the Madhura group should be employed as a snuff (in such cases). The milk of a she-goat duly cooked with the admixture of the leaves, roots or barks of Eranda plants, or with the roots of Kantakari, should be employed lukewarm in washing (Secana) the affected organ. A liquid compound containing half milk and half water, and boiled together with Saindhava, Vala, Yashti-madhu and Pippali, should be used in washing the eye as well as an Ashchyotana (eye-drop). A liquid compound consisting of the milk of a she-goat diluted with the addition of water, boiled with the admixture of Hriveta, Chakra (Tagara), Manjishtha, and Udumbara- barks is considered to be the best eye-drop in cases of there being any pain (Shula) in the eye. 2. B.

A thin plaster compound of Yasthi-madhu, Rajani, Pathya and Devadaru, pasted together with the milk of a she-goat should be used as an Anjana (collyrium) in a case of acute Ophthalmia (Abhishyanda), and it proves very effective. Gairika -earth, Saindhava, Krishna, (Pippali) and Shunthi —the quantity of each subsequent one being double of that of the one preceding it in the order of enumeration, should be pasted together with water, made into Gutika (a large pill) and be likewise applied (to the eye) in the manner of the application of an Anjana. The use of Snaihika (lardacious) Anjana (Collyrium) is beneficial in such cases. These will be duly dealt with later on. 2.

Physicians should likewise adopt this method in treating cases of Anyato-vata and Vata-paryaya. Draughts of (medicated) clarified butter and of milk before the meal, are highly efficacious. Clarified butter duly cooked with (two parts of) Vrikshadani, Kapittha and major Panca-mula, (one part of) the expressed juice (or decoction) of Karkata and (one part of) milk should be taken in such cases[3]. In the alternative, Ghrita duly cooked with (the decoction of) Pattura, Agnika (Ajamoda) and A rtagala and with milk, or clarified butter duly cooked with milk and (the decoction of) Mesha-shringi, or of Viratara should be similarly taken. 3.

Treatment of Shushkakshi-paka:—

Saindhava, Devadaru and Shunthi and the expressed juice of Matulunga, water, breast-milk and clarified butter mixed together and duly prepared (in the manner of Rasa-kriya) should be prescribed as an Anjana in cases of Shushkakshi-paka. The taking of clarified butter cooked with the drugs of the Jivaniya group and the filling of the cavity of the eye with the same, as well as snuffing with the Anu-taila[4] are also efficacious in such cases. Washes composed of cold milk with the admixture of Saindhava salt or of milk cooked with Rajani and. Deva-daru and mixed with (a little quantity of) Saindhava are efficacious. Mahaushadha (Sunthi) rubbed over a stone-slab with clarified butter and breast-milk is also recommended as an Anjana (eye-salve)[5]. The Vasa (essence of the flesh) of aquatic animals or of those which frequent swampy grounds, mixed with a little quantity of powdered Shunthi and Sanidhava salt (and rubbed on stone-slab) should be applied to the eyes as an Anjana (collyrium) in a case of Shushkakshi-paka (Non-secreting type of conjunctivites). Let the intelligent physician treat the sight-destroying Vataja affections of the eye of what-soever kind in accordance with the principle herein inculcated. 4–5.


Thus ends the ninth Chapter of the Uttara-Tantra in the Sushruta Samhita which deals with the medical treatment of Vataja Abhishyanda.

Footnotes and references:


It should be noted that the part of the forehead adjoining the eye and not the eye itself—should be fomented, since fomentation should not be applied directly over the eye.


Āścyotana (eye-drop):—Consists in dropping into the eye with the two fingers, honey, Āsava, drug-decoction or any oleaginous sub-stance. Its doses are eight drops for scarifying purposes, ten drops for lubricating the part with any oleaginous substance (Snehana), twelve drops for the healing of any local ulcer (Ropana). They should be dropped lukewarm in winter and cold in summer into the eyes. In diseases of Vātaja origin they should be of a bitter taste; oleaginous in diseases due to the Pitta; and bitter,—warm and parching in diseases due to Kapha.—Vaidyaka Nighantu as quoted in the Vaidyaka-Śabda-Sindhu. Cf. also Chapter XVIII, Uttara-Tantra.


According to Dallana and Gayadāsa, this Ghrita should be prepared without any Kalka. Śrikanta holds that the drugs Vrikshadāni, Kapittha and the Panca-mula should be taken as Kalka and the Ghrita prepared with three parts of milk. Śivadāsa also seems to support this view.


According to Dallana, this Anu-taila is not the one described in Chapter V of the Chikitsita Sthāna; but the one described in the Śālākya-Tantra.


This couplet may also be translated as follows:—“Anjana (black-antimony) rubbed over a stone-slab with clarified butter and breast-milk is also recommended as a best remedy in such cases”.

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