AGNIKARMA TREATMENT: HOW IT HELPS IN PAIN MANAGEMENT
Every individual desire for a pain-free life, but the pain is inevitable and its effective management has always been challenging. Pain may be acute or chronic and may originate from a muscle, ligament, tendon, bones, joints, etc. There may be a specific condition that may be causing the pain, such as spondylitis or osteoarthritis. For all these kinds of pain, Agnikarma treatment has the solution.
Agnikarma is a thermal and minimally invasive procedure that induces controlled, pointed and therapeutic burns over the regions that are tender or painful.
Agnikarma in Ayurveda
Agnikarma, also known as thermal microcautery, has been mentioned in the classical Ayurvedic texts of Sushruta Samhita, which was written by Vedic surgeon Sushruta. He describes how Agnikarma can have incredible effects on the treatment of the disorders of Asthi (bone), Sandhi (joint) and Snayu (ligament). Whether the pain is acute or chronic, the Agnikarma treatment can be beneficial for both.
According to the well-documented Ayurvedic literature on Agnikarma, the pain caused from the effect of Vata on the Snayu, Sandhi and Sira or veins, Agnikarma treatment should be given in combination with Sneha or oleation therapy, Bandhana or bandaging and Unmardana, which involves massaging, applying pressure or squeezing the body part.
Although Agnikarma or thermal microcautery is a rare practice today, it is a clinically established para-surgical treatment that can yield excellent results in pain management without any complication when done correctly.
The following are some of the reasons why you may go for Agnikarma treatment:
- It is a simple, safe and cost-effective procedure that effectively treats muscle, tendon, ligament, joint and bone pain.
- It is a minimally invasive procedure that can reduce the need for surgical interventions.
- It doesn’t affect the routine of the individual undergoing the treatment.
- It is performed without any drugs.
- It has no side effects when performed skillfully.
- As it is a daycare procedure, a hospital stay isn’t necessary.
- It may help to avoid or postpone surgery.
- It can show effective results in 2-4 weeks of treatment.
Some of the conditions for which Agnikarma may be used are:
- Degenerative joint disorder
- Calcaneal spur
- Achilles tendon
- Ankle pain
- Lower backache
- Neck pain
- Knee pain
- Injury from a sport
- Tennis elbow
- Golfer’s elbow
- Post fracture residual pain
- Frozen shoulder
- Carpel tunnel syndrome
Agnikarma at Govardhan Ecovillage
In the present world, the most common cause of disability in individuals is caused by musculoskeletal disorders, such as spondylosis, osteoarthritis, frozen shoulder, etc. When the pain and discomfort last for a long time, it can lead to psychological distress and have a negative impact on the quality of life.
Although modern medical drugs offer solutions to relieve from the symptoms, they can also cause severe side effects due to their chronic use. Therefore, at Govardhan Ecovillage, we offer Agnikarma treatment so that effective pain management can be achieved without any side effects or complications.
From the Ayurvedic perspective, pain is the result of an imbalance of Vata dosha in the body. Agnikarma treatment aims at eliminating the causative factor of pain by acting directly on the Vata-Kapha imbalance or aggravation in the body.
In the procedure, a special pointed metallic instrument is used which is called as Shalaka. The Shalaka is heated and then applied to the affected parts of the body to transfer the heat. The Ayurvedic practitioner creates these therapeutic burns according to the body constitution, area of pain, and severity of the disorder.
The patients can go back to their daily activities after the treatment is completed. Depending on the severity of their disorder, follow-up treatment may be necessary.
The procedure has been known to produce the following benefits:
- Enhances blood circulation to the affected part
- Stimulates the nerves and tissues
- Improves tissue metabolism
- Reduces the chances of developing an infection
- Temporary stimulation of local inflammatory response
- Promotes muscle relaxation and reduces joint stiffness
What is Agnikarma treatment?
As stated in Ayurvedic classical treatises, Agnikarma treatment is a para-surgical procedure which involves inflicting micro burns on the surface of the tissue that is causing the pain. To do that, it uses different instruments or tools of cauterization, also called Dahanopakaranas.
What are the tools of cauterization used in Agnikarma?
The tools of cauterization used in Agnikarma is based on different conditions of the body and the status of the disease concerned. Materials of minimum latent heat are used for the treatment of superficial conditions, and for issues affecting the deeper tissues, objects with maximum latent heat are used.
For example, for skin diseases occurring on the surface, Agnikarma uses Pippali (Piper longum), Godanta (cow’s teeth), Shalaka (probes), Shara (arrow), Suryakanta (a variety of stone), Varti (wicks), etc. For the disorders affecting the muscles, materials like Loha or iron, Tamra or copper, Swarna or gold, and Kamsya or bronze are used.
For deeper and stronger tissues like bones and ligaments, Agnikarma treatment uses Taila (oil), Madhu (honey), Vasa (fat), Guda (jaggery), Madhucchishta (beewax).
For most purposes, the Pancha Dhatu Shalaka is used, which is made up of copper, brass, bronze, lead and tin in equal quantities.
How does Agnikarma help to relieve the pain?
In Agnikarma, the heat is transferred to the area of pain through different instruments, which then increases the circulation of blood to the affected site. As the temperature rises in the area, the rate of metabolic activity increases.
Consequently, all the cell activities go up, including motility, synthesis, dilation of vessels, and release of chemical mediators. This eliminates the inflammation, thereby relieving the individual from the symptoms.
Are there any contraindications for Agnikarma?
Agnikarma is contraindicated in individuals with Pitta, ulcers, anaemia, children, aged patients, pregnant women, obese, alcoholics and people with low immunity.
Is there any complication that could arise from the Agnikarma treatment?
Agnikarma treatment is a safe procedure if it is performed by an experienced Ayurvedic practitioner. In other cases, it can lead to increased pain, burning sensations, tissue destruction, suppuration, etc.