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 LVII - Symptoms and Treatment of aversion to food (Arochaka)

Now we shall discourse on the chapter which deals with the (symptoms and) medical treatment of aversion to food (Arocaka-Pratishedha). 1.


The derangement of the Doshas either several or combined or an apathetic state of the mind (through grief, etc.) tends to block the foodcarrying channels viz., the esophagus, etc., as well as the region of the heart causing aversion to all sorts of food, which is designated Bhaktopaghata (lit. aversion to food—popularly known as Arocaka) by the physicians and it is divided into five distinct types (according to the different nature of its exciting factor). 2.

Specific Symptoms:—

Pain and cramps at the heart and a vapid taste in the mouth are the symptoms which mark the Vataja type of Arocaka. Excessive burning sensation (in the region) of the heart, sucking pain (in the locality), a bitter taste in the mouth, thirst and fainting fits are the features which mark the Pittaja type of the disease. Itching sensation, heaviness of the body, water-brash, lassitude, drowsiness and a sweet taste in the mouth are the indications which characterise the Kaphaja type. The Tri-doshaja type is characterised by a good many symptoms which severally mark the three Doshas. Indulgence in sensual pleasure, as well as in fear and grief, or the sight of any repugnant article, or of anything that tends to disturb the mental (Manasa) equilibrium, may also usher in an attack of Arocaka. 3–7.


In a case of the Vataja type, the patient should be first made to vomit with the help of decoction of Vaca and then be given a pulverised compound of Krishna, Vidanga, Yava-Kshara, Harenu, Bhargi, Rasnay Ela[1], Hingu, Saindhava and Nagara through the medium of any Sneha or wine or hot water. Vomiting should be induced with emetics sweetened[2] with the solution of treacle in the Pittaja type of the disease. The use of a lambative prepared with Saindhava, Sita (sugar), honey and clarified butter would also be efficacious. In the Kaphaja type, vomiting should be induced with the decoction of Nimba and the powders of Yamani should then (after the taking of the meal) be administered with the decoction of Aragvadha mixed with honey. The pulverised compound mentioned in connection with the treatment of the Vataja type may also be administered (in this case). All the preceding measures should be employed in the Tri-doshaja type of Arocaka. 8–11.

Four Specific Lambatives:—

  1. Draksha, Patola, Vit -salt, Vetra, Karira (bamboo-sprouts), Nimba, Murva, Abhaya, Aksha, Vadara, Amalaka, (barks of) Kutaja and seeds of Karanja and of Aragvadha should be (powdered and) duly cooked with the urine of a cow in the form of a lambative.
  2. A similar preparation should be made of Musta, Vaca, Tri-katu, the two kinds of Rajani, Bhargi, Kushtha and Nirdahani[3] and cooked with the urine of a ewe.
  3. Similarly Patha, Vamsa-locana, Ativisha and Rajani should be boiled together with the urine of a she-elephant.
  4. Manduki, Arka, Amrita and Langala should be similarly boiled by an experienced and practical physician with the urine of a she-buffalo.

Whoever licks up any[4] of the four preceding lambatives gets rid of Gulma, aversion to food, asthma and diseases affecting the heart and the larynx. 12.

Regimen of Diet:—

The patient should partake of fruits, edible roots, etc. which grow in his country and take cordials, Shadavas[5] Ragas[6] and other palatable dishes which are congenial to his physical temperament and which he is accustomed to. He should also be made to take (articles of) different Rasas[7] in different ways and his food should be at the same time light, Ruksha and agreeable to his taste. 13.

The due applications of Asthapana-Vasti, purgatives and of light head-purgatives (errhines) are efficacious in the disease under discussion. The drugs known as Tryushana, Rajani (D. R.—the two kinds of Rajani) and Tri-phala pounded together and mixed with powdered Yava-kshara and honey, should be used as a tooth-powder in washing the mouth. Any other drugs of bitter and pungent taste may be likewise prescribed for the purpose. 14–15.

Use of Decoction, Arishta and Asava:—

Decoctions of the drugs of the Mustadi and Aragya - dhadi or Dasha-mula groups as well as the different lambatives with honey, the different Asavas prepared with any officinal urine and with treacle as well as the different Arishtas and the different Asavas prepared from any Kshara and resembling in scent, the wine prepared from honey, should be used in conquering an attack of Arocaka. The aforesaid measures should also be employed for the purpose of re-kindling the digestive fire (appetite) impaired through the action of deranged Vayu and Kapha. 16.

Treatment of Manasa Arocaka:—

In a case of impaired digestion due to the effects of any ungratified desire, fear, grief, etc., the lost longing for food should be restored in the patient by holding out to him the near prospect of its realisation and by consoling him with the prospects of fresh joy and safety. In a case due to the loss of a splendid fortune, the bitter apathy and loathsomeness of the patient towards taking any food should be removed by infusing fresh hopes into his heart and by narrating to him the balmy stories of the Puranas. A case due to dejection or despondency should be conquered by sincere sympathy and cheering up. In short any impairment of appetite due to any disturbed or agitated state of the mind should be remedied with discourses gratifying to the patient under the circumstances. 17.


Thus ends the fifty-seventh chapter in the Uttara-Tantra of the Sushruta Samhita which deals with the (symptoms and) treatment of Arocaka.

Footnotes and references:


Elā—Dallana says that some take Elā in the sense of Ela-vālukā (a part used for the whole). Śivadāsa, however, refutes this and asserts, on the authority of Vāgbhata, that “Ela” should mean Elā.


According to some, the emetic used should be Madana fruit; while, according to others, it should be the drugs of the Madhura (Kākolyādi) group—the word ‘Madhura’ indicating the same. Some, however, read ‘Madhuka’ (Yashti-madhu) for ‘Madhura’.


Nirdahani, according to some, means Citraka, but, according to others, it means Yamāni. The former sense is the most general one.


According to Dallana the four lambatives should be used in cases of Vātaja, Pittaja, Kaphaja and Tri-doshaja types of Arocaka respectively.


“Shādava”—It is a preparation with a variety of articles of sweet, acid and saline tastes.


“Rāga”—It is a preparation of a cordial with sugar, Sauvarchala-salt, Saindhava, turmeric, Parushaka, black-berry and mustard, etc.


Dallana interprets “Rasa” by meat-soup but we are inclined to take it in the sense of articles of different tastes (Rasa).

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