Ichthyosis: Ayurveda Understanding

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Article by Dr Raghuram Y.S. MD (Ay) & Dr Manasa, B.A.M.S

Transient Introduction of Ichthyosis – includes a bunch of pores and skin situations. These current with dryness and scaling of the pores and skin. Some varieties are restricted to the pores and skin however different kinds would possibly have an effect on the inner organs. The genetic type of the illness can be widespread. Acquired varieties of ichthyosis happen from one other medical dysfunction or some medicines. Ichthyosis vulgaris and X-linked Recessive Ichthyosis are the 2 commonest varieties of ichthyosis.

Other than dry scaly pores and skin, redness, pores and skin peeling, itching, blisters, tightness of pores and skin, formation of traces and ache are additionally present in ichthyosis.

Associated Studying – Ichthyosis

Ichthyosis – Ayurveda Understanding

Vata Connection – Ruksha i.e. dryness is among the qualities of vata. Vata tends to provide dryness within the physique. Ichthyosis is a illness (ailments) marked by dryness of the pores and skin which can be one in every of its predominant signs. Vata aggravation would trigger excessive dryness wherever within the physique and likewise within the pores and skin. Scaling additionally is because of extreme vata aggravation. It may happen after the pores and skin has been extraordinarily dry for lengthy durations or along with dryness.

Pores and skin and Vata – Pores and skin / sense organ of contact is among the seats of vata. So, vata is all the time associated to the pores and skin. This additionally means that pores and skin shall be one of many organs to suffer from the impact of extreme vata aggravation.

Rasa Connection – Raukshya or rukshata suggesting dryness is among the signs of rasa kshaya i.e. depletion of rasa (lymph, plasma) tissue. Rasa gives vitamin to all elements of the physique together with the pores and skin. If the vitamin to the pores and skin will get much less or depleted over a time period the pores and skin would possibly get dry and scaly. In intrauterine life, the fetus derives its vitamin from the rasa of the mom circulating within the womb. If there’s deficit vitamin to the fetus it could trigger many ailments together with dryness and formation of scales within the pores and skin.

Rasavaha Srotas Connection – Pores and skin is the indicator of the well being of rasa tissue. In Ayurveda, the well being of rasa tissue is defined on the idea of the well being of pores and skin. Untimely wrinkling is among the signs of contamination of the channels transporting rasa. So, when these channels are contaminated the pores and skin is affected. The phrase untimely wrinkling could be prolonged to grasp the manifestation of situations like dryness and scaling of pores and skin. It’s mentioned that males affected by ichthyosis are at elevated threat of growing low sperm rely and or un-descended testicles (as issues of the illness). Klaibya or impotence, a symptom of contamination of rasa transporting channels which may happen on account of extreme depletion of semen (sperms) is a relative situation defined in Ayurveda.

Panchabhautika Connection – Panchamahabhutas or 5 parts of nature take part within the formation of the fetus as per Ayurveda rules. When there’s imbalance of Vayu Mahabhuta i.e. air component and Akasha Mahabhuta i.e. ether component (each of which mix to kind vata dosha additionally) i.e. once they dominate over the opposite mahabhutas, pores and skin situations presenting with dryness and scaling naturally at delivery like ichthyosis can manifest amongst different problems. Together with this if there’s imbalance of Jala / Ap Mahabhuta in direction of the decrease aspect within the formation of the fetus, the moistness of the pores and skin of the newborn will naturally be much less or nearly nil. These elements would predispose the fetus to develop ichthyosis-like situations after or at delivery which could run forward into adolescence and later a part of one’s life.

Signs & issues of Ichthyosis and Dosha involvement

Dryness and scales of ichthyosis are brought on by vata predominance as already mentioned. The scales in ichthyosis are normally white, darkish brown or grey in coloration. The lesions of Vata predominant Kushta (pores and skin ailments) are mentioned to be shyava varna or aruna varna. Shyava varna intently resembles darkish brown or grey coloration. The pores and skin will get tough and is related to ache in vata predominant pores and skin problems; the identical is the case in ichthyosis. There are cracks within the scales and the signs of ichthyosis worsen in chilly and dry climate and get higher in hotter climate. The identical options could be seen in vata predominant kushta.

Different signs –

Sl No Signs of Ichthyosis Dosha relation
1 Redness could be correlated to aruna varna of vata predominant kushta or raga of pitta predominant kushta
2 Pores and skin peeling / cracking Vata
3 Itching Vata / Kapha / Vata-Kapha
4 Blisters Pitta / Pitta Kapha
5 Pores and skin tightness Vata, Vata-Kapha
6 Formation of traces Vata
7 Thickening of pores and skin Vata, Vata-Kapha
8 Ache Vata
9 Fragile hairs, hair loss Vata
10 Dryness of eyes, problem in closing the eyelids Vata
11 Lack of ability to sweat Vata
12 Problem in listening to Vata
13 Problem in flexing the joints of the physique Vata

Likewise amongst issues of ichthyosis, frequent infections could be prompted on account of tridosha imbalance, dehydration and blocked sweat glands on account of vata improve and kapha lower, sluggish progress of hairs on account of vata and pitta, despair on account of kapha improve, low sperm rely and un-descended testicles on account of vata improve.

Different issues embrace imaginative and prescient loss and issues associated to the mind and nervous system are additionally brought on by excessive vata.

Ailments in Ayurveda and Ichthyosis

Although we can not correlate any explicit situation / illness defined in Ayurveda with Ichthyosis we are able to draw inferences from the references out there within the treatises whose signs or look intently resemble the talked about illness.

Ekakushta – The time period “Ichthyosis” is derived from the Greek phrase for fish. It’s because the pores and skin on this situation appears just like the scales of a fish.  That is the rationale why some individuals name this ‘fish pores and skin illness’ or ‘fish scale’. This situation could be intently correlated to Ekakushta. It’s one among the many eleven varieties of Kshudra Kushta i.e. minor pores and skin ailments. Ekakushta can be correlated to a different pores and skin situation named Erythrodermias.

अस्वेदनं महा वास्तु यत् मत्स्य शकल उपमम्।
तद् एक कुष्ठं, (च.चि.७/२१)
asvedanaṃ mahā vāstu yat matsya śakala upamam|
tad eka kuṣṭhaṃ, (ca.ci.7/21)

Signs of Ekakushta – The minor pores and skin illness through which lesion is unfold over an prolonged space of the pores and skin (massive lesion) resembling the pores and skin of a fish in look and contour, seems scaly and doesn’t sweat (absence of sweating across the lesion) and is predominantly brought on by vitiation of vata and kapha is understood by the title Eka Kushta.

Vata Pradhana Kushta – The signs of pores and skin problems in which there’s predominant aggravation of vata have been talked about above. To sum up –

  • Kharatva – roughness of the pores and skin
  • Shyava aruna varna – brownish black or reddish yellow discoloration of the pores and skin
  • Ruksham – dryness of the pores and skin
  • Vedana – ache

All these signs are current in ichthyosis.

The Kushtas included on this class are –

1. Kapala Kushta

कृष्ण अरुण कपालाभं यद् रूक्षं परुषं तनु।
कापालं तोद बहुलं तत् कुष्ठं विषमं स्मृतम्॥(च.चि.७/१४)
kṛṣṇa aruṇa kapālābhaṃ yad rūkṣaṃ paruṣaṃ tanu|
kāpālaṃ toda bahulaṃ tat kuṣṭhaṃ viṣamaṃ smṛtam||(ca.ci.7/14)

The Kushta through which the lesions or eruptions resemble a Kapala i.e. piece of saucer or earthen pot known as Kapala Kushta. On this, the lesions are both blackish brown, gray or yellowish crimson (golden yellow) in coloration. It might be of reddish black or blackish crimson in coloration with a muddy shine. They give the impression of being dry and are tough and arduous on contact, skinny on the floor and in stage to the pores and skin floor, unfold abruptly in a haphazard approach, related to extreme pricking / throbbing ache. It is a form of Mahakushta (higher pores and skin ailments) and is predominantly brought on by vata dosha vitiation.

2. Vicharchika

स कण्डूः पिडकाः श्यावा बहु स्रावा विचर्चिका॥ (च.चि.७/२६)
sa kaṇḍūḥ piḍakāḥ śyāvā bahu srāvā vicarcikā|| (ca.ci.7/26)

Vicharchika presents with a number of itchy boils or eruptions or blisters of blackish brown or bluish black coloration that are oozing, related to extreme discharges (exudation) and extreme itching sensation and is predominantly brought on by vitiated kapha dosha. Vicharchika is in contrast with eczema which is a complication of ichthyosis.

3. Rshyajihwa Kushta

कर्कशं रक्त पर्यन्तं अन्तः श्यावं स वेदनम्।
यद् ॠष्य जिह्व संस्थानं ऋष्यजिह्वं तद् उच्यते॥(च.चि.७/१७)
karkaśaṃ rakta paryantaṃ antaḥ śyāvaṃ sa vedanam|
yad ṝṣya jihva saṃsthānaṃ ṛṣyajihvaṃ tad ucyate||(ca.ci.7/17)

This Kushta sometimes resembles the form of the tongue (jihwa) of a Rushya / Rishya (kind of deer or bear), tough or coarse in look and contact, crimson coloured on the margins and bluish black on the centre, related to ache and is brought on by predominant vitiation of vata and pitta doshas.

4. Charma Kushta

चर्माख्यं बहलं हस्ति चर्मवत्॥(च.चि.७/२१)
carmākhyaṃ bahalaṃ hasti carmavat||(ca.ci.7/21)

The pores and skin across the lesion seems (resembles) just like the pores and skin of an elephant in Charma Kushta, the pores and skin is thick and devoid of layers and is predominantly brought on by vata and kapha doshas.

5. Ekakushta

Defined above

6. Kitibha Kushta

श्यावं किण खर स्पर्शं परुषं किटिभं स्मृतम्। (च.चि.७/२२)
śyāvaṃ kiṇa khara sparśaṃ paruṣaṃ kiṭibhaṃ smṛtam| (ca.ci.7/22)

The a part of the pores and skin bothered by Kitibha Kushta is blackish brown in coloration and provides a really feel of wound scar i.e. tough on contact, dry (tough, arduous) and is brought on by vitiation of vata and kapha doshas.

7. Sidma Kushta

श्वेतं ताम्रं तनु च यद् रजो घृष्टं विमुञ्चति।
अलाबू पुष्प वर्णं तत् सिध्मं प्रायेण उरसि॥(च.चि.७/१९)
śvetaṃ tāmraṃ tanu ca yad rajo ghṛṣṭaṃ vimuñcati|
alābū puṣpa varṇaṃ tat sidhmaṃ prāyeṇa urasi||(ca.ci.7/19)

Sidhma Kushta resembles (has the colour of) Alabu Pushpa (flower of Lagenaria sicareria), white or coppery in coloration, has skinny lesions, yield dusty particles (peeling of pores and skin) on rubbing or scratching. It’s usually manifested on the chest and is brought on by vitiated vata and kapha doshas.

8. Alasa Kushta

कण्डूमद्भिः स रागैः च गण्डैः अलसकं चितम्॥ (च.चि.७/२३)
kaṇḍūmadbhiḥ sa rāgaiḥ ca gaṇḍaiḥ alasakaṃ citam|| (ca.ci.7/23)

Alasaka presents within the type of itching boils or eruptions, reddish coloration and related to itching sensation and is predominantly brought on by vitiation of vata and kapha doshas.

9. Vaipadika Kushta

वैपादिकं पाणि पाद स्फुटनं तीव्र वेदनम्॥ (च.चि.७/२२)
vaipādikaṃ pāṇi pāda sphuṭanaṃ tīvra vedanam|| (ca.ci.7/22)

Vaipadika Kushta presents with cracks within the palms and soles related to extreme (excruciating) ache and are brought on by vitiation of vata and kapha.

All of the above described situations could be included underneath the umbrella of ichthyosis because of the proximity of medical options.

10. Shukra-Shonitagata Kushta – The fetus fashioned by fertilization of the sperm of man and ovum of the girl affected by kushta will even be a kushti – sufferer of pores and skin problems. This may be intently in comparison with Inherited / X-linked / genetic ichthyosis.

Twakgata Vata

Dryness of the pores and skin and cracking of pores and skin (peeling, traces) are amongst the signs of twakgata vata i.e. vitiated vata localized within the pores and skin.

Vata Vyadhi generally

Basically most vatavyadhi (particular and particular vata problems) could have varied gradients of dryness on the pores and skin and contained in the physique as effectively. To think about that is essential from the therapy perspective.

Acquired Ichthyosis and Ayurveda – Whichever systemic illness defined in Ayurveda presents with extreme dryness and scaling of the pores and skin as defined in ichthyosis shall be thought-about to be causal. In these circumstances treating the primary illness will care for dryness and scaling of pores and skin. Instance – dryness of the pores and skin is among the signs of panduroga (usually in comparison with anemia, additionally contains liver problems). Right here treating panduroga will clear the dryness of the pores and skin. The identical precept shall be adopted if ichthyosis-like signs are present in any systemic illness defined in Ayurveda.

Ayurveda therapy rules for ichthyosis (treatable)

Ichthyosis doesn’t have a treatment, primarily the genetic varieties of ichthyosis. The opposite treatable varieties of ichthyosis must be handled to one of the best of 1’s capability. The success of the therapy will depend on the severity of the illness, selection of interventions and regularity of therapy.

Ichthyosis shall be handled by administering the therapies, medicines, dietetic routine and life-style modifications talked about within the beneath talked about situations defined in Ayurveda. The selection of those will depend on the judgment of the doctor and will differ from individual to individual and situation to situation.

Therapy rules of the beneath talked about shall be thought-about –

  • Kushta Chikitsa – pores and skin ailments defined in Ayurveda
  • Vataja Kushta Chikitsa – pores and skin ailments of vata origin (contains all varieties of kushtas which fall on this class)
  • Kshudra Kushta Chikitsa with particular reference to Eka Kushta
  • Rasavaha sroto dushti chikitsa – treating the contamination of rasa conveying channels within the physique  
  • Vata Vyadhi Chikitsa – therapy of particular vata problems
  • Twak Gata Vata Chikitsa – therapy of vata localized within the pores and skin

Coping with Vata

Because the total image of ichthyosis is dominated by vata, all therapy methods must be targeted on bringing vata to a state of steadiness by all attainable strategies. The beneath talked about would be the key methods. Other than exterior and inside therapies, food regimen and life-style suggestions to steadiness vata must be applied.

Exterior Therapies

Oil is one of the best enemy for aggravated vata. It may be used externally in addition to internally and likewise together with meals.

Snehana – oleation –In ichthyosis the pores and skin must be stored moist and lubricated as usually as it could. Many oil therapies could be finished on the pores and skin together with pouring of medicated oils in streams / showers (Parisheka / Sneha dhara / Kaya seka / Pizhichil), bathing the physique in a bath stuffed with medicated oil (Avagaha) and natural oil therapeutic massage (Abhyanga).

Inside Therapies

Panchakarma Therapies –

Sneha Vasti – Enema with medicated oil / ghee or mixture of each must be administered in ichthyosis. Anuvasana Vasti could also be administered. Alternatively common administration of lubrication enema with medicated fat in small doses could also be steadily administered – Mata Vasti.

Vamana or Virechana – Therapeutic emesis or purgation could also be required in acquired / secondary ichthyosis to deal with the primary ailments inflicting ichthyosis and likewise to purify the physique of its morbid doshas and toxins.

Dad or mum / dad and mom affected by ichthyosis, if planning to conceive kids, ought to bear Panchakarma therapies adopted by Rasayana therapies earlier than conceiving.

Helpful formulations for ichthyosis



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