Sushruta was both an ancient Indian medic, and is also the name of the text the doctor wrote, outlining his ideas, which are still oftentimes used in India, almost unchanged as of today.
Sushruta the doctor was born deep in India’s past, but the exact date has never been decided as there is no concrete evidence either way. It is known however that his medical script has been used for thousands of years.
He was famous for many things, his most notable additions being the classification of wounds (which has so far been completely unchanged, save for the addition of “gunshut” to such descriptions as “wound severence,” “puncture,” “crushed wound,” and many different classifications for cuts, abrasions, bone breaks, and dislocations), as well as being one of the first people in history to have attempted and successfully done various reconstructive plastic surgeries.
Sushruta was the first to successfully complete a rhinoplasty (nose reconstruction), otoplasty (ear lobe), and oroplasty (lips). He also was attributed with successfully treating a myriad of medical issues, such as hemorrhoids, various tumor removal, dental, and ulcers.
His medical contributions are so advanced, not only for his time but for modern times as well, that many modern doctors see his work as more than satisfactory for treating patients, and are using his techniques.
Second, the Sushutra Samhita, is the text written or compiled by Sushruta the doctor, outlining all of his ideas. Together, with the Chakara Samhita (another medical text of around the same time), many Indian doctors would treat both the physical and the psychic aspects of a disease to fully heal the patient. Both texts are so advanced that, oftentimes and in conjunction, they can work to heal a patient, and are still adhered to in much of the Indian subcontinent when treating patients.
The 7 Chakras
Chakras are an ancient Hindu belief of 7 centers of energy in the body. Chakras have been around since ancient times and are listed in various Vedic scriptures. Each Chakra Point focuses on a different aspect of life, and are associated with a particular element or function.
The seven Chakras are:
– Root: Earth-based. Focuses on feelings of security.
– Splenic: Water-based. Focuses on procreation and sensuality.
– Solar Plexus: Fire-based. Focuses on ego and identification.
– Heart: Air-Based. Focuses on love and determination.
– Throat: Akasha-(Aether)based. Focuses on understanding.
– Third Eye: Mahatattva-(All-elements)based. Focuses on union and self-realization.
– Crown: No element, but is active when one reaches enlightenment as being beyond all desire.
There are 7 main chakras, but also 40 minor chakras and approximately 88,000 chakras associated to physical aspects of the body, much as the Chinese had points where chi-flow crossed.
Chakras flow around the body based on sex. Male chakra flow clockwise in the body, and female chakra flows counter-clockwise. This is what allows male and female compatibility.
Chakra flow was often seen as the root of physical symptoms, and changing that flow was what would fix it. Chakras were seen as being points of energy directly connected to the physical body, the major ones generally attached to the spine, and so anything affecting a chakra would, in turn, affect the physical body. So to treat the body, one would have to treat the chakra associated.
Today, many Hindu and Buddhist beliefs incorporate chakras into their lore and practices, being places of essence of ones being, in both a religious and very physical sense. Having good chakra is akin to enjoying a good life, and many people still take it very seriously.
The three Ayurveda Aspects
The Ayurveda is a type of medical philosophy dating back to ancient India, perhaps the Indus Valley civilization. It means Ayu, or life, and Veda, or knowledge, thus, it means “The knowledge to life” or “right living.” It is based on Vedic scripture, the earliest of which date back to almsot 3000 BCE. It is a method of being prescribed various physical and psychic (mental) tasks to help one work with their environment to become happy and healthy.
Special care is taken towards prescribing specific diets to follow seasons, activities, and temperaments to fit the person. Healthy exercise and regularity are the key aspects to Ayurveda.
It is also based around body type and physical aspects, all of which are taken into account to maximize happiness.
Pitta is moderate in size and girth, precise, soft-skinned, soft haired. Considered ambitious and Courageous.
Vatta is the skinny, lankyish person, exciteable, but otherwise sounds weak. Can be fast moving, and is prone to overall appear “narrow.” Considered creative and joyous.
Kapha is stocky build, slow-moving, round or full, with bright eyes. Considered grounded and patient.
By applying the medicinal concepts of Ayurveda, one could achieve happiness through health.
Today, the Ayurveda is applied, although under a different name: it is currently one of the more modern practices of Chakra.
Huntington disease is called hereditary chorea or Huntington chorea, the word “Chorea” comes from the Greek word “dance” referring to the involuntary movement of the feet and face and as disease progresses. A person with Chorea develops abnormal movement, dementia, memory loss, depression, clumsiness, slurred speech, difficulty swallowing, changed in thinking, behavior and personality. Symptoms of Chorea show up between the ages of 30 and 50. About 30,000 people in the USA are affected by Chorea.
Cure: there is no cure for people who have inherited Chorea. But there are therapies, such as speech therapies and physical therapy, which can lessen the symptoms.
Malaria is an ancient, common tropical disease that is very fatal. It is spread by certain kinds of mosquitoes. Symptoms of malaria include joint pain, flashes of fever, and nausea. These symptoms can be cured, but the disease comes back again. In Africa people have up to forty round of malaria in their lifetime. Malaria virus known as Plasmodian falciparum that dates back to as far as several million years ago, but it didn’t started effecting humans until about 10,000 years ago. Malaria has been described in medical records from ancient China, India, and Greece. Word “malaria” comes from two Italian words for “bad air”: Mal “bad” Aria “air”. Because people in ancient times believe that the virus is coming from poisonous vapor in the air around swamps and lakes. People who lived near swamps and lakes are more prone to the disease. The Romans had the most success trying to get rid of the malaria, they drained large swamp areas around the city where malaria lived and bred.
CAUSES: Malaria is transmitted by female mosquitoes that carry the parasite in their body. Once the mosquito bites a person it injects small amount of saliva into the person’s bloodstream. The saliva contains the parasite and it travels through the bloodstream into the person’s liver where it reproduces. Once it leaves the liver into goes back into the bloodstream and that’s when the symptoms start to show.
Smallpox is a highly infectious and lethal disease that is caused by the variola virus, a member of the poxvirus family. The virus is airborne and is easily spread through sneezes, coughing, and even by touching objects such as books or blankets where an infected person has slept. When infected by the variola virus there is a 12-14 day delay, where the virus is multiplying in the body and no symptoms are visible. After the 12-14 day period symptoms become visible/noticeable all of a sudden. The symptoms include high fever of 102-106 degrees F, chills, headache, muscle cramping especially in the back, vomiting. After 3-4 days the fever decreases and the symptoms decrease also. It seems like the patient is getting all better. Then painful sores develop in the mouth, face and forearms, and they become firm and they increase in number. They spread from the face and ends of arms and legs toward the body. 3-4 days after this rash, clear blisters form and then the blisters get filled with puss. Some of them bleed. Then they form crust and scabs that usually fall off three weeks after the beginning of the illness, leaving small scars. It can be more serious than this; people can die from it, due to the infection of the blisters and no effective cure for it. The patient is contagious from one day before the rash appears until all the scabs have fallen off.
History: In the middle ages it was noticed that ladies who milked cows would get a viral infection from the cows called “Cow Pox” or “Milker’s Nodules” people noticed that people who had cow pox never got smallpox, because the virus was somewhat similar to the smallpox. This gave people the idea to immunize against smallpox by using similar virus to smallpox. Cow pox was rarely very serious and it provided immunity from smallpox, so that’s how people got the idea to vaccinate against smallpox. In 1967 the world health organization started a program to get rid of smallpox. After ten years smallpox was considered to no longer exist. There are only two laboratories that keep the virus alive for possible future use, and those laboratories located in Atlanta, Georgia and the other one is in Moscow, Russia.
Text book: Harrison’s Principles of Internal Medicine, 11th edition, 1987 McGraw Hill
Ancient Egyptians were among the first to use wine as medicine
Wine is one of the oldest drinks in the world: people learned very quickly to ferment various plants to get an alcoholic beverage. But it was used as more than just an enjoyable drink, alcohol was used in many medicinal ways, and it still is.
For thousands of years, since the cultivation of grains and the discovery that fruit can ferment, people have been drinking wines and beers. But it was also a much safer bet for ancient peoples: unlike water, which was oftentimes dangerous to drink from bacteria within the water, alcohol had antiseptic properties that rendered it sterile, both perfect for safe drinking and for applying to open wounds to clean.
Some analyses of ancient Egyptian jars from between 5000 BCE and 1500 BCE show not only alcohol residues from wine stored within them, but the jars also hold various plants often used in herbal remedies, such as coriander, balm, and rosemary, all used to treat various symptoms of sickness. So in addition to the antiseptic properties alcohol had, ancient peoples may have mixed it with other remedies, making a sort of alcoholic tea that could treat many symptoms all at once, in a single delicious drink.
Today, wine and alcohol are often consumed for the effects of its high: getting drunk, or at the very least the buzz. But studies have shown that moderate amounts of red wines can reduce heart disease and other ailments, while other alcohols in moderation have other benefits. We don’t often mix it with herbal remedies anymore, but it is still shown to have a positive effect on the human body.
“More than three small glasses (3 units) of red wine a day and all the positive effects of wine go out the window, says Dr Alan Crozier of the University of Glasgow. “You’re raising the risk of heart disease, cirrhosis, cancer and stroke.”. ” Belfast Telegraph 11 Sep. 2010, ProQuest Newsstand, ProQuest. Web. 16 Sep. 2010.
Natalie Angier. “An Ancient Medicine (Enjoy in Moderation). ” New York Times 11 Dec. 2007, Late Edition (East Coast): Banking Information Source, ProQuest. Web. 16 Sep. 2010.
“Unlocking Egypt’s herbal remedies. ” Townsville Bulletin 2 May 2009, ProQuest Newsstand, ProQuest. Web. 16 Sep. 2010.