Rheumatoid arthritis is a chronic inflammatory condition which is considered as an autoimmune disorder. The prevalence rate of RA is 0.75% in adult Indian population which gives a total of about 7 million patients in India. In developed countries also prevalence of RA is showing the similar results. And around the world about 1% of the population is suffering with RA, women 3 times more often than men.
RA can cause joint pain and swelling which is initially appears on the joints of hands and feet. Later stages the inflammation of joints will turned to the bone erosion and deformity. The immune system will recognise your body tissues as foreign body and starts to attack by its own. Here the lining of joints (Synovium) gets mostly affected.
When the disease progresses the cartilage, tendons and ligaments gets damaged and will loses its structure and configuration. It has been reported that it may attack the other organs like heart, lungs, eyes, kidneys, eyes, bone marrow, and blood vessels.
- Morning stiffness of joints
- General weakness
- Swelling, tenderness and redness of joints
- Reduced mobility and flexibility of joints.
- Symptoms on same joints on both sides of body (usually)
Stages of Rheumatoid Arthritis
Stage 1: Body mistakenly starts to attack its own joint tissue.
Stage 2: Joint starts to swelling up due to antibodies within.
Stage 3: Joints will turns to bent, crook and deformed.
Stage 4: Joints completely degenerated and fused.
- Age: Commonly starts with middle age, but it can happens in any age.
- Sex: Women are more prone to R.A. than men.
- Hereditary factors: There is an increased incidence rate in the persons those who have a family member with R.A.
- Addictions: Smoking is one of the causative and triggering factor as per the various studies. Alcohol is doesn’t bear this name. The actual role is unknown.
- Environmental factors: Silica, asbestos like some of the chemicals are found to be risk factors. But the data can’t be considered as an authentic one.
In Ayurvedic perspective the RA condition can be correlate with the symptoms of Amavata. Imbalances of Vata dosha due to Ama condition leads to the improper function of dhatus (tissues) which get targeted to the sites of joints (predominant site of Kapha dosha) and causes symptoms. These doshas get blocked into the nourishment channels (Srotas) and reduced supply of nutrients will worsen the disease. As the disease progresses which will results into the other systemic involvement.
- Swelling, pain and stiffness of joints
- Pain which is similar to scorpion sting (severe pain)
- Joints affected:-hand, foot, cervical, sacrum, knee, hip & ankle joint.
- Body pain
- Loss of taste
- Lack of enthusiasm
- Heaviness in precordial region
- Indigestion etc
Ayurveda is uplifting the holistic approach in each disease management. The prime importance is given to nullify the production of Ama in the body. It can be achieved by igniting the digestive fire and metabolic activities. After that we have to expel the accumulated toxins from the body through the purification methods. Finally, treatment protocol of Amavata is advised.
- Langhana (lightness therapy)
- Shodhana Chikitsa( Purification of body)
- Shamana Chikitsa ( Internal medication for pacifying symptoms)
It is the method of practicing fasting or intake of easily digestible light foods. This helps to bring the lightness in the body.
The bio-purificatory methods like Virechana (Purgation), Vasthi (Medicated Enema) etc. helps to evacuate the accumulated toxins from the body.
Internal medications to cure the symptoms as well as to strengthen the joints are available in Ayurveda. Which is very effective and practiced since thousands of years.
Ayurveda can reform your health by ensuring the proper treatment.
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Author : Dr. Seleena V