ayurveda handbook logo



Causes and Symptoms: Perhaps the most serious-and also most disgusting-disorder of the skin is leprosy. It affects not only the skin, but also the mucous membranes and the nerves. According to modern medicine it is caused by Mycobacterium leprae, discovered in 1872. The disease is endemic to tropical climates and the African continent, India, the Far East and the Central and South Americas are its favorite haunts.

Leprosy is of two types: (i) tuberculoid; and (ii) lepromatous. Tuberculoid leprosy is not serious because it runs a benign course and is self-healing. But lepromatous leprosy is the real thing, inasmuch as it is real leprosy which we so much hear about. The two types of leprosy cannot easily be distinguished from each other because of some mixed symptoms found in both of them. The manifestation of the disease on the skin runs from areas of whitening to formation of massive nodules which are visible on the body of the patient suffering from it. If the nerves are involved, as they are in lepromatous leprosy, there is pain and in severe cases loss of all sensation in the affected parts. Sometimes, the disease affects the eyes leading to total blindness. Ulcers may also be found in the mouth and the larynx. In advanced cases, the fingers fall at the joints and the skin over the palms starts rotting. Ulceration of the extremities can lead to loss of feet and hands. Facial deformities are also in evidence among lepers.

Since leprosy is an infectious disease, the patient suffering from it must be segregated; better still, he should be removed to a hospital for infectious diseases or a leper's home. If that is not possible, he should be kept in a room away from contact with others. Leprosy is, in many cases, hereditary and even the seemingly healthy offspring of people suffering from it should be advised not to marry.

Once the disease has taken hold of the sufferer it cannot be cured with home remedies and expert medical advice and help has to be sought. But in the preliminary stages, the following remedies will help.

Remedies: Sap of the Neem tree (which is found oozing out of some trees) should be given in five tola doses daily. The body of the sufferer should be massaged with this sap. This regimen should continue for 40 days. If the sap is not available, five grains of Pepper and one tola of Neem leaves should be ground in water and drunk. Sesame Oil should be used to massage the body of the patient.

An ancient remedy is the oil of Chaumoogra Oil. Four drops of the oil should be given with milk. Neem Oil should be used over the affected spots on the body. Or, one tola of Hirankhuri (Corchorus Facicularis) and five grains of pepper should be ground together in water and drunk for forty days.

The body of the patient should be bathed with water in which leaves of Neem and Amaltas have been boiled. He should take a proper diet in which salt should be as little as possible. Constipation and indigestion should be guarded against, as they are likely to aggravate the condition.


Valid HTML 4.01 Transitional     Valid CSS!

     o Home        o Disclaimer        o Contact us        www.ayurveda-handbook.com © 2011