In ayurveda terminology, anorectal disorders are referred as gudagata vikara and few examples of such diseases include as follows:
In Ayurveda, anorectal disorders are elucidated through the lens of disturbed doshas, primarily Vata and Pitta, along with the influence of various factors like diet, lifestyle, and psychological aspects. Conditions such as hemorrhoids (Arsha), anal fissures (Parikartika), and fistulas (Bhagandara) fall under the spectrum of anorectal disorders.
According to Ayurvedic principles, an imbalance in Vata dosha, responsible for movement and dryness, can lead to dryness and constriction in the anal area, contributing to conditions like fissures and hemorrhoids. Additionally, aggravated Pitta dosha, associated with heat, may cause inflammation and irritation.
Dietary indiscretions, such as consuming spicy and fried foods, and a sedentary lifestyle are considered contributing factors. Emotional stress and irregular bowel habits further exacerbate these disorders.
If any individual follows irregular dietary and lifestyle regimen (apathya aahar and vihaar) it leads to imbalance in the doshas which further vitiates the digestive fire (agni) and also vitiation in the regulation of apana vayu (responsible for all movements in the intestinal channels) creating a sort of stagnation in the digesion process from going smoothly and this forms the basis ofanorectal diseases as the “mala” is not excreted properly.
In ayurveda science as well, for the treatment and healing of anorectal diseases, many protocols are listed and these also focus on the symptomatic approach because signs in many of such illnesses are very much troublesome interfering with basic day to day activities of patient’s life. And if we have to heal the disease from the root, then root cause is “mandagni” – imbalanced digestive fire. Hence through ayurveda protocols only its possible to achieve complete healing in anorectal diseases because root cause of vitiated digestive fire is addressed.
Ano-rectal diseases, as viewed in Ayurveda, fall under the category of “Guda Roga” or diseases related to the anal region. Ayurveda, the ancient system of holistic healing, provides a profound understanding of these conditions, emphasizing the balance of doshas, dhatus (tissues), and malas (wastes) for overall health. The most common ano-rectal diseases include hemorrhoids (Arsha), fissures (Parikartika), fistulas (Bhagandara), and pilonidal sinus (Nadi Vrana). According to Ayurveda, these conditions are primarily associated with the vitiation of the Vata dosha, often aggravated by factors such as improper diet, sedentary lifestyle, and chronic constipation.
Hemorrhoids, or Arsha, are characterized by the swelling of blood vessels in the anal region. Ayurveda attributes this condition to the imbalance of all three doshas, with Vata being the predominant factor. Dietary factors such as excessive intake of spicy, oily, and dry foods, as well as sedentary habits, are believed to contribute to the aggravation of Vata and the formation of hemorrhoids. Ayurvedic treatments for Arsha include dietary modifications, lifestyle changes, and the use of herbal formulations like Triphala and Arshoghni Vati to alleviate symptoms and promote healing.
Fissures, known as Parikartika in Ayurveda, involve painful tears or cracks in the lining of the anal canal. This condition is associated with an aggravated Vata dosha and is often triggered by constipation, passage of hard stools, and dietary factors that lead to dryness in the anal region. Ayurvedic interventions for Parikartika include dietary fiber supplementation, local application of soothing oils like Ghee, and the use of herbs like Haritaki to relieve constipation and promote healing.
Fistulas, termed as Bhagandara, represent abnormal channels or passages that connect the anal or rectal lumen with the external skin. Ayurveda considers Bhagandara as a complex condition involving the vitiation of all three doshas, with a predominant role of Pitta. Prolonged constipation, improper hygiene, and the formation of abscesses in the anal region are factors contributing to the development of fistulas. Ayurvedic treatments for Bhagandara include the use of herbal formulations like Triphala Guggulu and Kshara Sutra, a medicated thread, to encourage healing and closure of the fistulous tracts.
Pilonidal sinus, or Nadi Vrana, is a condition characterized by the formation of a sinus or cyst in the coccygeal region. Ayurveda attributes this condition to the vitiation of Vata and Kapha doshas, aggravated by factors such as poor hygiene and a sedentary lifestyle. The accumulation of hair follicles and debris in the coccygeal region leads to the formation of sinus tracts. Ayurvedic treatments for Nadi Vrana involve the application of herbal pastes, warm compresses, and the use of Kshara Sutra to promote drainage, healing, and prevent recurrence.
Ayurveda emphasizes a holistic approach to the management of ano-rectal diseases, incorporating dietary and lifestyle modifications, herbal interventions, and Panchakarma therapies. Maintaining regular bowel habits, following a balanced diet, and adopting a physically active lifestyle are essential components of preventive care. Ayurvedic treatments aim not only to alleviate symptoms but also to address the underlying imbalances, promoting long-term health and well-being. Individualized treatment plans, tailored to each person’s unique constitution and doshic imbalances, are crucial for the effective management of ano-rectal diseases in the Ayurvedic tradition.