Leeches for Blood Letting Therapy Print
Written by Dr. M. B. Pillewan   

According to Acharya Charak, Panchakarma consist of five types i.e. Emesis therapy, Purgative or Laxative Therapy, Oily Enema Therapy, Decoction Enema Therapy and Nasal insufflations. Sushruta, the father of surgery has said that there are several diseases occurring due to vitiation of blood than the vitiation of Vata, Pitta and Kapha.

Hence he has mentioned blood letting therapy in Pancha karma. It could be performed on red circular eruptions, menorrhagia, eye disease, burning sensation during intake of food. Hyperacidity, excessive sleep, myalgia, piles, anorexia, gout, leucoderma, psoriasis, Acne vulgaris, dyspepsia, skin disease, ring work, toxication, stomatitis, splenomegaly, hepatomegaly, bad breath, scabies, urinary disorders, bloody skin, heamaturia, conjunctivitis, ovulitis, pyorrhea and alveolitis. The blood is vitiated by improper regimen of Vata and blood becomes reddish, non slimy, foamy and thin. When the blood is yellow blackish and take longer time to coagulate due to excessive heat present in it then it is called vitiated by Pitta, when blood is slightly pale in color, slimy, threadly and thick then it is vitiated by Kapha. A pleasant and auspicious day is indicated which is neither too hot nor too cold or cloudy. Blood letting should not be done in rainy season when the sky is not clear.
The blood letting could be done with instruments and without instruments. The metallic substance is used to incise the blood vessels and blood is let out. These are two types Prachana (Scarping by scalpel) and Siravyadha (drawing blood in a syringe from a vein). There is another type called “Anushastra” used in delicate persons, young children and the aged persons. Some times in pregnant women also. Through “Without instruments” method leeches, cow's horn, bitter substances are applied.
Leech Therapy: Leech used for removing the impure blood from the diseased part are of twelve types, out of which six are poisonous species are Krishna, Karbura, Alugarda, Indrayudha, Samudrika and Gochandana. If by chance, the poisonous leech bites the person symptoms will be have be swelling, fever, burning sensation, drowsiness, delirium and at last he will lose consciousness.
A bite of Indrayudha is fatal. Among Non poisonous leeches there are Kapila (like Manashila), Singala (round in shape and red in color and move very fast), Shankhamukhi (color of Yakmta and elongated mouth) and Mooshika (tinged like a rat and give out bad smell from the body).
The non poisonous leeches originate in pure water containing different types of lotus. These leeches are available throughout India where pure water is available. The leeches are kept in first turmeric water for about 5-10 minutes and then they are removed and kept in pure water. In case of dry but does not bite the part of that time make a small prick to remove blood then leech sucks the blood. At a time 3-6 leeches can be applied in chronic condition of skin disease. One leech may suck 20-30ml of blood.
When the impure blood is sucked by the leech the patient dose not feel any pain when leech starts sucking blood the blood will not opt. due to secretion of Hirudin which is anticoagulant. Due to secretion of Hirudin enzyme leech only suck impure blood. When the leeches are floated with blood they should made fall by putting salty water drop on the affected part. In order to make it vomit the impure blood completely, it is necessary to keep leech in salt water for some its fatality. So it should not be applied again for 7 days. After the leech is removed the wound is smeared with Padmakadi oil or Jatyadi oil and turmeric powder with proper bandage is done. After leech therapy liquid diet like Gruel is to be taken.

Lecturer, Deptt. Basic Pcinciples,
Dayanand Ayurvedic College & Hospital,

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DAV's Ayurveda for Holistic Health
ISSN 2348-6910 Volume - 1 , Issue: 28 , September 2015

Home arrow Feb 2009 arrow Leeches for Blood Letting Therapy

Editorial Board

Chief Patron
Shri Punam Suri
President, DAV College Managing Committee,
New Delhi.

Dr. Ramesh Arya
Vice President, DAV College Managing Committee,
New Delhi.

Chief Editor
Dr. Raj Kumar Sharma
Asst. Director, Dayanand Ayurvedic College,
Ph: +91-9814204443

Dr. Sanjeev Sood
Principal, Dayanand Ayurvedic College,
Ph. : +91-9814004142

Executive Editor
Dr. Anup K. Gakkhar

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