Is There Any Ayurvedic Treatment for Scleroderma

Introduction

Scleroderma is an autoimmune disorder which affects the body in multi-system level and may bring changes in the skin, blood vessels, muscles, and internal organs. It can be either localized to the skin or gets spread to internal organs.

scleroderma

Scleroderma which is also known as crest syndrome or systemic sclerosis is an autoimmune disorder in which the connective tissues of the body are affected and is of unknown etiology. As the name indicates – sclero + derma – hardening of the skin is the main manifestation of the disease. As a result of hyperactivation of the immune system, the inner lining of the tiny blood vessels are damaged and the tissues are injured. This leads to fibrosis (scar tissue formation) and accumulation of collagen, making the skin and the lining of internal organs (especially kidney) thick and firm.

Females are more susceptible to scleroderma than males.

Scleroderma – Ayurvedic Approach

According to the Ayurvedic viewpoint, vitiation of Vata, Pitta , and rakta are the major events in scleroderma. Vitiation of Vata, Pitta, and Kapha due to intake of apthya aahar and vihar (improper diet and lifestyle) can vitiate simultaneously, which can in turn disrupt twak, ambhu, rakta dhatu and mamsa dhatu (body tissues)

Vata gets aggravated starts to move in wrong directions and gets obstructed by rakta and thus vitiate rakta (blood) with pitta dosha. Vitiated Vata and rakta residing in skin and muscles, start first as uttana type and then in course of time spreads to all tissues.

Scleroderma symptoms begin with inflammatory signs (mainly due to aggravated pitta) and later lead to tightening or hardening of the skin (due to aggravated vata).

Scleroderma is sometimes referred to as crest syndrome when it is accompanied with the following issues.

  • Calcium deposits
  • Reynaud’s disease
  • Esophageal problems
  • Thickening of the skin of fingers and toes
  • Areas of small dilated blood vessels

Signs and Symptoms

  • Raynaud’s phenomenon, palpitation, irregular heart rate, hypertension, fainting due to conduction abnormalities.
  • GERD, bloating, anorexia, diarrhea alternating with constipation.
  • Dry persistent cough, progressive worsening of shortness of breath.
  • Muscle and joint aches, carpal tunnel syndrome, muscle weakness.
  • Kidney failure, erectile dysfunction, dyspareunia.
  • Trigeminal neuralgia, stroke, headache, weight loss.

Ayurvedic Treatment for Scleroderma

Balanced shaman chikitsa and Rasayana therapy is needed in the long-term management of this disease. Medicines mainly indicated by PLANET AYURVEDA are

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1. Ashwagandha Capsules

Planet Ayurveda’s Ashwagandha capsules contain a standardized extract of Withania somnifera that have anti-inflammatory property. Ashwagandha is described as an adaptogen. It has the power to retrain the body in stressful conditions. It helps to prevent the immunosuppressive activity of the body.

2. Boswellia-Curcumin

Combination of two wonderful ingredients shallaki (Boswellia serrata) and turmeric (Curcuma longa). They are potent anti-inflammatory herbs. Boswellia curcumin capsules help to boost the immune system. They are mainly indicated when joints are involved as they help to enhance the blood supply to joints and cartilage. Curcumin is a potent anti-oxidant. An effective anti-inflammatory agent that is best indicated in all sorts of inflammation and painful conditions.

3. Gotukola Capsules

These are prepared from Mandukaparni herbal extract (Centella Asiatica). It is rich in antioxidants. Gotu kola helps to improve blood circulation and purify blood channels. It is an excellent brain tonic and also helps to relieve inflammation.

4. Sanjivani Vati

It is an amazing herbal preparation prepared out of Triphala (Amlaki, haritaki and babhitaki), trikatu (Pippali, marich and shunthi), guduchi (Tinospora cordifolia), vacha (Acorus calamus),vidanga (Embelia ribes), shudh ballataka (Semicarpus anacardium), shudh vatsanabha (Aconitum ferox). Sanjeevani vati helps to balance vitiated Vata and pitta. It manages most of the autoimmune disorders and also helps to remove the toxins accumulated in the body.

5. Gandhak Rasayan

It is a potent anti-inflammatory formulation, prepared out of shudh gandhak. It also has anti-oxidant and adaptogenic properties. It helps to relieve itching or burning sensation due to any underlying pathology. It helps to improve the skin health due to its wonderful detoxifying and purifying properties.

Natural Ways and Diet to Manage Scleroderma

  • Opt for an alkaline diet. Avoid foods which cause heat production. Onion and garlic– it is better to avoid the intake of both if you have scleroderma. But its topical application on the hardened skin works. Both have anti-oxidant properties and help to soften the skin.
  • Lemon + honey – topical application of this mixture can work wonders. Lemon helps to eliminate the free radicals. Honey is a natural emollient. Avoid internal intake that may further aggravate condition.
  • Turmeric – its topical application and intake with a glass of milk (low fat) or water is magical. Turmeric helps to eliminate free radicals in the body. Turmeric is a natural anti-oxidant.
  • Avoid smoking and alcohol.
  • Avoid heavy and packed foods.
  • Drink plenty of water, coconut water is also a good option to calm body heat.
  • Protect your skin. Avoid harsh soaps and chemicals. Moisturize your skin with herbal products.
  • Reduce joint pain by low impact exercises and physical therapy.
  • Include healing foods in your diet. These include fresh vegetables like spinach, asparagus, beets and carrots, cucumbers and mushrooms.
  • Practice simple breathing exercise, anulom vilom.