Saturday, February 23, 2008

Leech Therapy



Dear Readers,

Radhekrishna to all! Let us continue with our discussion on leech therapy.

We left you with a few unanswered questions isn't it? But as we have always done in the past, we are back with the answers for you.

When a leech bites a person, it does not actually cause pain. Yes, it's difficult to believe but true. In fact, even if a leech bites a person, it takes some time to pass before the person realises that something is biting him! In addition, the bite instantaneously anesthetizes the bitten spot giving the leech the time to take its fill.

This combination of action is precisely what provides the patient relief from arthritic pain.

Now as regards the second question; relating to a substitute to this leech therapy in science: To combine all the attributes involved in the leech therapy treatment i.e. painlessly effected flow of blood; in a chemical substance or a combination is a challenge enough. The delivery is in fact considered a bigger challenge. There are doctors

who believe that modern chemistry and gadgetry cannot improve upon what the leech can do. The leech, tiny as it is, absorbs blood at an extremely slow pace. The leech would also let go as soon as it has its fill. This combination virtually eliminates the risk of excessive extraction of blood. Achieving a similar result would call for delicate instruments and continuous attention from a nurse with attendants risk of human error.

So as you can see, there is little science can do to substitute something which Hinduism has got to offer! The scientists themselves say this thing! It's not that we are trying to create a false impression in the minds of our readers!

Let us know look at some more examples of modern day where this therapy has been rightly given the respect that it deserves!

Leech treatment is more main stream than what is commonly understood. In 1985, a BostonVietnam used the procedure on a five year old boy whose ear had been bitten off by a dog. There are atleast 2 companies in the United States of America– Leeches U.S.A Ltd., Long Island, New York and Biopharm of Charleston, South Carolina – whose business is supplying leeches for medical purposes, vouches for this practice gaining ground & acceptance in USA.

This is a classic example of how a study of history (of medicine, in this instance) helps. The 'why' behind the solutions of yore can be figured out and alternative more convenient vehicles for delivery of the solutions can be synthesized to suit the modern times.

On a concluding note, leeches are approved as 'medical equipment' by U.S.F.D.A

Do keep on chanting the Namam of Lord Radhekrishna and keep enjoying the bliss!

We will begin with a new article the next time.

Sarvam Guruvarpanam

Wednesday, February 06, 2008

Leech Therapy




In the previous article, we saw the use of leech in Hinduism for curing arthritic pain. Doesn’t it sound astounding and marvelous? A creature which sucks blood helping a person in curing his pain?

But nevertheless its true dear readers! Therapeutic use of leech finds mention in Ayurveda.

Let us now look at some research and experiments conducted by the scientists.

To test whether leech therapy is really effective, the below empirical evidence is available:

In 2003, in a paper by Dr. Andreas Michalsen and colleagues from Essen, Germany, titled "Effectiveness of Leech Therapy in Osteoarthritis, of the knee", was published in a recent issue of Annuals of Internal Medicine. 24 patients with osteoarthritis, caused by wear and tear of the ageing knee, were given a one–shot leech therapy. Four to six leeches were allowed to attach themselves to each knee and drink blood for about an hour. 27 others with the same ailment were given twice daily doses of the painkiller Dicofenac for a month.


Leech therapy was better than drug therapy! 'Prakriti' or nature will always win!
Why is it so? Why does leech therapy work?

While the ancient Hindus knew what to do, today's scientists have identified why the leech therapy works.

Nature has endowed the leech saliva with some purpose–specific chemicals:

· Vasodilator, a histamine that increases the diameter of our blood vessel

· An enzyme called hyalurondase, which breaks down hyaluronic, the material that bonds connective tissues and

· Hirudin (named after the specie of leech that is commonly used for blood letting), which inhibits blood–clotting

The combined result of these chemicals is increased blood flow.

So there lies the secret, dear readers! That’s the reason why the leech proves effective.

But then a question comes to the mind: That wouldn’t it pain if the leech bit a person? Isn't Hinduism suggesting a rather bizarre solution? Further, can't there be an effective medicinal substitute for this? Does science have the answer? Wait till the next issue to find out the answers to these questions!

Till then do more and more chanting. Radhekrishna!

Sarvam Guruvarpanam


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