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Year : 2012  |  Volume : 31  |  Issue : 4  |  Page : 212-213

Manual of rheumatology

Research Officer, AVP Research Foundation, AVT Complex, Trichy Road, Ramanathapuram, Coimbatore, Tamil Nadu, India

Date of Web Publication18-Feb-2013

Correspondence Address:
Sujithra Ram Manohar
Research Officer, AVP Research Foundation, AVT Complex, Trichy Road, Ramanathapuram, Coimbatore, Tamil Nadu
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

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How to cite this article:
Manohar SR. Manual of rheumatology. Ancient Sci Life 2012;31:212-3

How to cite this URL:
Manohar SR. Manual of rheumatology. Ancient Sci Life [serial online] 2012 [cited 2022 Jun 27];31:212-3. Available from: https://www.ancientscienceoflife.org/text.asp?2012/31/4/212/107366

Editor in Chief- U R K Rao

Emeritus Editor:
Prakash Pispati

Editors: K M Mahendranath et al.

Year: 2009 Pages: 400 Price: INR 990

ISBN: 978-81-907918-0-9

Binding: Soft Bound

Publisher: Indian Rheumatology Association

The Indian Rheumatology Association (IRA), India the professional organization of rheumatologists and other health professionals mostly renowned Allopaths, has incorporated this particular chapter "Rheumatology and Indian Systems of Medicine" in the third edition of "Manual of Rheumatology". Thus an effort has been made to bridge the gap between modern medicine and traditional Indian systems of medicine. Both systems of medicine have their own merits and demerits. The publication of this article can be taken as a positive step towards the integration of the medical systems that would ultimately prove beneficial to the public in the long run. The specific chapter "Rheumatology and Indian Systems of Medicine" having a section on 'Rheumatology in Ayurveda' is very thought promoting and highlights the explanations in the traditional systems of medicine pertaining to the specific disease. The Ayurvedic section is dealt very briefly and is sufficient enough for a layperson or an allopath to get the outline structure as to what is offered for rheumatology in Ayurveda. The chapter also has sections on Unani medicine, Siddha medicine, Homeopathy and Nature cure therapies. Rheumatology in Ayurveda draws attention as it deals with the basic relevant fundamentals with interesting modern correlations. However, they are only a drop in the ocean, as this only gives an insight into the system and not relevant enough for the understanding of the system as a whole. But this attempt will definitely be of immense utility to an outsider as it deals with the pros and cons of the system in a nutshell.

Rheumatological complaints are a major concern for the people irrespective of the age or profession. Though complementary and alternative medicine is not routinely taught in medical schools, a major population resort to these treatments when affected with rheumatological complaints. Rheumatology includes range of diseases like osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, infective arthritis, and low backache. The authors have aptly mentioned that the Indian practitioners should recognise the importance of the medicals systems that they are practising and must include evidence-based modalities in their day-to-day practice. The authors give a brief account of the adverse events and related issues with regard to the use of alternative medicine and the solution to the problem. The heavy metal contamination which is the greatest threat that is being faced today can be resolved by subjecting them to purificatory methods as mentioned in the classical ayurvedic texts. The inappropriate detoxification and prolonged administration by way of self-medication seem to be the determining factors. In this article the author deals with relevant fundamentals and therapies along with important evidence in the Indian systems of medicine.

The author explains in detail how Ayurveda deals with rheumatology and the treatments mentioned for the various rheumatological complaints as in the Ayurvedic texts. An attempt has been made to correlate the modern diagnosis with that of the Ayurvedic disease condition by considering the symptoms present in each condition. These are controversial topics since immemorial times. It would be a brain storming exercise to analyse if the ayurvedic diagnosis can match the modern diagnosis. Apart from the diseases, some commonly used anti-rheumatic drugs like guggulu (Commiphora wightii), bhallataka (Semecarpus anacardium), ginger (Zingiber officinale), ashwagandha (Withania somnifera), turmeric (Curcuma longa) are also dealt with. The common classical ayurvedic formulations used in amavata (rheumatoid arthritis) and in sandhigatavata (osteoarthritis), their nature and the average dose prescribed per day are explained in a table. The importance of fasting and diet as a medical intervention in the treatment of rheumatological complaints especially rheumatoid arthritis is laid stress upon. These statements do not require a rethinking as they are perfectly explained in the classical texts. WHO lists cervicobrachial syndromes, frozen shoulder, tennis elbow, sciatica, low back pain and osteoarthritis as treatable by Chinese medicine, and acupuncture. NIH consensus panel on Acupuncture lists carpal tunnel syndrome, epicondylitis, fibromyalgia and low back pain as conditions in which Acupuncture is very useful. When the recognition comes from International organisations it is definitely a golden feather in the cap.

The author rightly points out that the therapies are all science and art by themselves and a single person may not be able to master all of them. The Ayurvedic community should take a vow that we would start evidence based practise, and report all positive and negative findings to create awareness amongst us, thus adding to the growth of the medical system as a whole.

Lawrence Clark Powell quotes (American Librarian, Writer and Critic, 1906-2001) - "Write to be understood, speak to be heard, read to grow."


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