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 XXV - Symptoms of diseases of the head

Now we shall discourse on the chapter which deals with the symptoms of diseases peculiar to the region of the head (Shiro-roga-Vijnaniya). 1.

Classification:—

Diseases which are peculiar to the region of the head number eleven in all, viz., the four kinds respectively due to the action of the deranged Vayu, Pitta, Kapha, and their combination, as well as those which are respectively incidental to any bodily waste (Kshayaja), or to the vitiated condition of the blood (Raktaja), or to the existence of parasites (Krimija), the remaining four being known as Suryavarta, Ananta-vata, Ardhavabhedaka and Shamkhaka. The symptoms of these eleven kinds of head-diseases are given below. 2.

Symptoms of Dosha-origined types:—

A fit of violent headache without any apparent cause and which becomes worse in the night and is relieved by pressure or by being bandaged or by an application of iomentation round the head, should be ascribed to the action of the deranged Vayu, and is known as the Vataja-Shiroroga. A violent burning and aching pain in the head, in which the scalp seems to have been strewn over with bits of live charcoal, accompanied by a sense of scorching vapour being emitted from the nostrils, and which ameliorates in the night or on the application of cold, should be ascribed to the action of the deranged Pitta, and is known as the Pittaja-Shiroroga. A fit of headache in which the head (palate) and the throat[1] seem to be covered with a coat of sticky mucus, and feel cold and heavy, and cannot be turned about, and the face and the eyes look swollen or flabby, should be attributed to the action of the deranged bodily Kapha, and is called the Kaphaja-Shiroroga. A case marked by the concerted action of all the three preceding Doshas exhibits all the symptoms peculiar to all of them, and is known as the Tri-doshaja-Shiro-roga. 2–6.

Symptoms of Raktaja, Kshayaja and Krimija types of Shiro-roga:—

A case of headache due to the vitiated condition of the local blood manifests all the symptoms of the Pittaja type, and the head becomes incapable of (bearing) the least touch. This is known as the Raktaja-Siroroga. A case of headache incidental to the waste of the local Vasa (fat) or Kapha[2] is marked by an intolerable pain (Abhi-tapa) in the head which is aggravated by the application of fomentation, fumigation, errhine, emetic and blood-letting. This is known as the Kshayaja-Shiro-roga. The disease of the head in which a pricking and tingling pain is felt inside the head as if being stung, (by some poisonous insect), and which is accompanied by a watery discharge mixed with blood (D. R. pus) from the nose, should be attributed to the existence of local parasites. This disease is a dangerous one and is known as the Krimija (Parasitic) Shiro-roga. 7– 9.

Symptoms of Suryavarta Shiro-roga:—

The disease of the head in which a severe pain is felt in the eye and the eyebrow just at sunrise, and which goes on growing worse with the progress of the day and begins to abate only when that great luminary begins to set in the western sky, is called Suryavarta. It (generally) abates on the use of cold articles but sometimes on that of warm things as well. It is ascribed to the concerted action of the three Doshas. 10.

Symptoms of Ananta-vata Shiro-roga:—

The disease of the head in which a violent pain is felt at the Manya and the Ghata (the two nerves on the backside of the neck) which ultimately affects the region of the eye, the eyebrow and the temples and specially produces a throbbing of the cheek, as well as paralysis of the jaw-bone and the eye. The disease is known as Ananta-vata and is due to the concerted action of the three Doshas. 11.

Symptoms of Ardhavabhedaka and Shamkhaka:—

The disease of the head in which a violent and excruciating pain of a piercing or aching nature is felt in one half of the cranium which makes the patient feel giddy, and which either follows no distinct periodicity or recurs at a regular interval of ten days or of a fortnight, is called the Ardhavabhedaka and is due to the concerted action of the three Doshas. A violent pain caused in the head and more especially in the temples by the local Vayu in combination with the deranged Kapha, Pitta and blood is designated by the holy sages of Ayurveda as the Shamkhaka. It produces a very great pain, and is very hard to cure even by the joint advice of thousands of physicians and is as fierce as death itself. 12–13.

 

Thus ends the twenty-fifth chapter in the Uttara Tantra of the Sushruta Samhita which deals with the symptoms of the diseases of the head.

Footnotes and references:

1.

In place of “śirogalaṃ” some read “śiro bhavet”. This reading is adopted by Mādhava. There seems to be no difference in the meaning?s? the word “śiras” (head) may include both the palate and the throat.

2.

Dallana here comments that the term “Vasā” means all the fatty substances in the body, e.g., the brain substance, Medas, semen, Majjan, etc. There is a variant which is not recognised by Gayi. That reading is “asṛgvasāśleṣmasamīraṇānāṃ” (i.e., by the waste) of blood, Vasā Kapha and Vāyu. This, however, seems to be the better reading.

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