Treating Arthritis with an Age Old “Unani” system of Medicine Featured
The ‘Unani medicine’ is an old age system of medicine, also known as Greeko-Arab medicine, was founded by Hippocrates. The Unani medicine is based on ￼the principle of equilibrium and balance of natural body humours (blood, bile, black bile and phlegm).
‘Arthritis’- common joint disorder characterised by joint pain and inflammation, affecting humans since ancient time and can disable humans if not treated in time. ‘Arthritis’ is a general term covering more than 100 different conditions.
In conventional treatment, pain killers, surgeries and other medical interventions are used to treat different types of arthritis; in order to relieve pain and prevent dysfunction of joints.
However, conventional treatment cannot get total control over symptoms leading to great dissatisfaction and may be disabilities in some cases.
The complementary and alternative medicines (CAM) has been proved effective in treatment of various arthritis, controlling symptoms without medicinal side effects; while improving quality life of patients.
Let’s know how the time tested Unani system of medicine helps in controlling the symptoms of various types of arthritis from renowned Unani practitioner and researcher Dr. Munshi.
￼Dr. Younis Munshi MD (Unani) is working as Scientist-3 in Central Council for Research in Unani Medicine, Dept. of AYUSH, Ministry of Health and FW.
He had already published four international and seven National publications.
Dr. Munshi had also presented one paper in San Diego University, CA, USA in 9th International Conference on Functional Foods held in August 16-19, 2012
Dr. Munshi had presented at least 13 papers in different national seminars/conferences on various topics including leeching therapy, diet therapy etc.
Can you provide brief introduction about Unani system of Medicine.
The name Unani is derived from a Greek word Ionian which means medicine- a symbol of life. Tibb means the knowledge of the states of the human body in health and illness (decline of health).
￼Unani Tibb strives to find the best possible ways by which a person can lead a healthy life. Hence, Unani is an age old, time tested system of medicine dating back 5000 years to Greece.
It refers to a tradition of Greeko-Arabic medicine which is based on the teachings of Greek physician Buqrat (Hippocrates; 460-377 BC) and Roman physician Jalinoos (Galen) and developed into an elaborate medical system by Arab and Persian physicians such as Al Razi (Rhazes), Avicenna (Ibne sina), Al Zahrawi and Ibn Nafis.
How unani system of Medicine, helps in treatment of arthritis?
The Unani System of Medicine is based on the humoral theory. There are 4 humors in the body viz,
Phlegm (Balgham),Yellow Bile (Safra),Blood (Dham)Black Bile (Sauda).
When these four humors are in balance and equilibrium of them is maintain the body stays in healthy state. The disturbance of equilibrium or imbalance of these humors leads to diseased condition.
As far as the Arthritis is concerned the physicians of Unani system have mentioned different types of arthritis e.g. Naqras (Gout), Waja-ul-Warak (LBA), Waja-ul-Mafasil Har (Rheumatoid Arthritis), Waja-ul-Mafasil Sajiz (Osteoarthritis) etc.
All these type of arthritis are caused due to derangement of one or the other humor. While determining the course of treatment temperament of the persona and temperament of the medicine are considered. The medicines are selected on the base of disease stage, patient temperament (imbalance of particular humour) and temperament of the medicine.
The suitable medicine and regime help to balance the imbalance humour; thus treats the root cause and gives relief from the symptoms of pain and inflammation of joints
Which type of arthritis is treatable with Unani system of medicine?
As I mentioned above when all the types of arthritis are mentioned in the Unani System so the treatment is available for both osteoarthritis as well as Rheumatoid Arthritis.
We have studied the efficacy of Leeching (Regimental therapy) in osteoarthritis where we have been able to reduce the joint swelling of Knee by an average of 0.7 inches (Data already published).
In Rheumatoid Arthritis we had been able to reduce the DAS score from average of 6.2 to the average of 2.4 with Munzij/Mushil therapy (Concoction and Purgation) one of the regimental therapies, which prove the efficacy of Unani Medicine in both the conditions.
How is patient of arthritis treated under the treatment of Unani? Various modes of treatment?
As far as the mode of treatment is concerned we practice three options for the treatment according to the preference which are as follows:
1. Diet/Regimental therapy (Ilaj Bil Tadabeer wa Agzia)
2. Pharmaco-Therapy (Ilaj Bil Advia)
3. Surgical intervention (Ilaj Bil Yad)
First and foremost consideration is b