Charaka Visha Chikitsa 23rd Chapter of Chikitsa Sthana

23rd Chapter of Charaka Samhita Chikitsa Sthana is called Visha Chikitsa. It deals with symptoms and Ayurvedic treatment of poisoning due to snake bite, scorpion bite, food poisoning etc.

Chapter – 23
Let us explore the treatment of Visha (poisoning). Thus, said Lord Atreya. [1-2]
Topics to be discussed:
O! Agnivesha, hear me carefully. I shall describe Visha (poison) and its related to its following aspects.
1. Mythological origin of poison
2. Properties of poison
3. Source of poison
4. The stage of virulence of poison
5. Signs and symptoms of poisoning and
6. Therapeutic measures to contribute poisoning. [3]

Mythological origin of poison

In the days of Yore, while the ocean was being churned by the Gods and the demons for obtaining Amrutha – ambrosia, even prior to the production of Ambrosia, a ferocious- looking person who came with Aura, and who had 4 fangs, tawny hair and fiery eyes emerged. The world became despaired (Vishanna) at his sight because of which he was called Visha or poison.
Lord Brahma deposited this poison in Jangama (mobile) and Sthavara (immobile) things. Therefore, poison which originated from water is of 2 types – Jangama Visha and Sthavara Visha. It resembles fire.
Its action is manifested in 8 virulent stages, it has 10 attributes and the ailments caused by its affliction can be treated by 24 categories of therapeutic measures. [4- ½ 7]

Normal aggravation and Alleviation of Visha

Because the visha originates from water, and becomes sticky like jaggery ,when it comes in contact with water and spreads during the rainy season. However, the star Agastya (canopos) at the end of rainy season counteracts the effects of this poison. Therefore, the effects of poison become milder after the rains are over. [7 ½ – 8]

Jangama Visha

Jangama Visha (poison of Mobile Origin):
The poison of these creatures constitutes animal poisons (poison of mobile origin):
Sarpa – Snakes,
Keeta – insects,
Luta – spiders,
Vrschika – scorpions,
Grha godhika – house lizards,
Jalauka – leeches,
Matsya – fish,
Manduka – frogs,
Kanabha or Salabha – locusts
Krkantaka (Chamelion)
Shvana – dogs,
Simha – lion,
Vyaghra – tiger,
Gomaya (jackal),
Taraksu (hyena),
Mongoose, etc., are the fanged animals through whose fangs the poison is transmitted. [9- 10]

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Sthavara Visha

Sthavara Visha (poison of Immobile Origin):
The poisons of immobile origin are: the roots (including Rhizomes) of
Mustaka – Cyperus rotundus
Pushkara – Costus speciosus
Vatsanabha – Aconitum ferox
Karavira – Nerium indicum
Indrayudha Taila
Kusha (Desmostachya bipinnata) Puspaka
Rohisha – Cymbopogon martinii
Langalika – Gloriosa superba
Srungi -Visha
Halahala and
Such other poisonous roots [11- 13]

Gara Visha

Garavisha (Artificial Poisons):
There is another variety of poison called Garavisha which is prepared artificially by the mixture of various substances. It produces diseases. Since it takes some time for this type of poison to get metabolised and to produce its toxic effects, it does not cause instantaneous death of a person. [14]

Jangama Sthavara Visha Lakshana

Effects of Sthavara and Jangama Visha:
Jangama Visha Lakshana:
Jangama Visha (poison of mobile origin or normal poison) produces
• Nidram – somnolence
• Tandram – drowsiness
• Klamam – mental fatigue
• Daha – burning sensation
• Sa pakam – inflammation
• Loma harshanam – horripilation
• Sopham – edema and
• Atisara – diarrhoea

Disease- Treatment Of Charaka Samhita Made Easy

Sthavara Visha Lakshana
(poison of immobile origin or vegetable poison) produces
• Jwara – fever
• Hikka – hiccup
• Danta harsham – tingling sensation in the teeth
• Gala graham – obstruction in the throat
• Phenavamya – vomiting of frothy materials,
• Aruchi – anorexia
• Shwasa – dyspnoea and
• Murccha – fainting
The animal poison moves downwards whereas the vegetable poison moves upwards in the alimentary canal. Therefore, the animal-poison cures poisoning by vegetable- poison, and the poisoning caused by animal- poison is cured by vegetable – poison. [15-17]

Visha Vega 

Stages of Poisoning in Human beings, Animals and Birds:
In human beings, the effects of poisons are manifested in 8 different stages as follows:

1st stage – Prathama Visha Vega:
In the first stage because of the vitiation of Rasa (chyle or Plasma), the patient suffers from
• Trut – morbid thirst
• Moha – unconsciousness
• Danta harsha – tingling sensation in teeth
• Praseka – salivation
• Vamathu – vomiting and
• Klama – mental fatigue.

2nd stage – Dvitiya Vishavega:
. In the second stage because of the vitiation of blood, the patient suffers from
• Vaivarnya – discoloration of the skin
• Bhrama – giddiness
• Vepathu -Tumbling
• Bhrama – fainting
• Jrmbha – Yawning
• Bhanga – tingling sensation in the limbs and
• Shvasa -dyspnoea

3rd Vishavega
In the third stage, because of the vitiation of Mamsa (muscle tissue), the patient suffers from
• Mandala (circular eruptions)
• Kandu – Pruritus
• Shyvathu – oedema and
• Kotha – Urticaria

4th stage:
. In the fourth stage, because of the vitiation of Vata, etc. The patient suffers from
• Chardi – vomiting
• Daha – burning sensation
• Anga shula – pain in the limbs
• Murccha – Fainting etc.

5. In the fifth stage, the patient suffers from
• Neela darshana – blue vision or
• Tama darshana – dark vision etc.

6. In the sixth stage, the patient suffers from
• Hikka – hiccup

7. In the seventh stage, the patient suffers from
• Skandha Bhanga (Paralysis of the muscles in the shoulder girdle) and

8. In the eighth stage the patient succumbs to death.
The above mentioned 8 stages of poisoning are manifested in human beings.

Effect of poisoning on quadrupeds

Effects of poisoning on quadruped animals –
The effects of poisoning are manifested in 4 different stages and in birds, it is manifested in three stages.
The 4 stages of poisoning in animals are as follows:
1. In the first stage, the animal gets depression and giddiness
2. In the second stage, the animal trembles
3. In the third stage, the animal feels emptiness (Sunya) , and it stops eating and {the term” Suna” in the first line of the verse no. 22 has a variant reading as ‘Suna’ meaning oedema. By implication, the animal gets swollen during the third stage of poisoning, and this appears to be more appropriate].
4. In the fourth stage, the animal dies because of the obstruction to respiration.

Effects of poisoning on birds

1. In the first stage, the bird gets depressed
2. In the second stage, the bird gets giddiness and
3. In the third stage, the bird develops smoothness of the limbs resulting in death. [18- 23]

Qualities of poison

Visha Guna – qualities of poison:
The 10 attributes of poison according to the expert toxicologists:
• Laghu – Lightness
• Ruksha – dryness
• Asu – quickness
• Vishada – non-sliminess
• Vyavayi – which pervades the whole body before getting digested
• Tikshna – Sharpness
• Vikasi – which causes looseness of joints by the diminution of Ojas or vital essence
• Sukshma – Subtleness
• Ushna – heat and
• Anirdesya Rasa – indistinct taste

Aggravating factors

Aggravating factors: Because of
• Ruksha (dryness) – aggravates Vata;
• Ushna (heat) it causes aggravation of Pitta;
• Sukshma (Subtleness), it vitiates Rakta (blood);
• Ashu (quickness) it quickly permeates through (lit. Follows) the Anna Rasa (Chyle);
• Vyavayi- Attribute, it spreads through out the body instantaneously;
• Tikshna (sharpness) it causes injury to the Marmans (vital organs)
• Vikasi- attribute, it cause death;
• Laghu (lightness) it becomes difficult for therapeutic management; and
• Vaisadya (no sliminess), it pervades all the Doshas circulates along with them constantly.
Depending upon the location off the Doshas and the contribution of the patient, poisons produce several other complications. [24- 27]

Dosha based Visha Lakshana

Dosha based symptoms of Visha:
If the poison gets lodged in the habitat of Vata (i.e Colon) in a person having a Vatika type of constitution, then the patient suffers from:
• Trut – morbid thirst
• Moha – unconsciousness
• Arati (dislike for every thing)
• Murchha – fainting
• Gala graha – obstruction in the throat,
• Chardi – vomiting
• Phenadi praseka – foamy salivation etc.,
There will be less manifestation of the signs and symptoms of kaphaja and Pitta.

If the poison gets lodged in the habitat of Pitta, in a person having a pattika type of constitution, then the patient suffers from:
• Trut – morbid thirst
• Kasa – coughing
• Jwara – fever
• Chardi – vomiting
• Klama – mental fatigue
• Daha – burning sensation
• Tamas (appearance of darkness before the eyes)
• Atisara – Diarrhoea etc.
There will be less manifestation of the signs and symptoms of Kapha and Pitta.

If the poison gets lodged in the habitat of Kapha, in a person having a Kapha type of constitution, then the patient suffers from:
• Shwasa – Dyspnoea
• Gala graha – obstruction to the throat
• Kandu – itching
• Praseka – excessive salivation
• Chardi – vomiting Etc.
There will be less manifestation of the signs and symptoms of Vata and Pitta [28- 30]

Dushi Visha

Signs Of Dushi Visha (Artificial Poison):
Dusi- Visha (a type of artificial poison) vitiates blood and produces symptoms like (eczema in the head), Kitibha (Psoriasis) and Kotha (urticaria). This type of poison afflicts each one of the Doshas and causes death of the patient. [31]

The cause of Death by Poison:
Because of the power of the poison, the [vitiated] blood transudes to obstruct the channels of circulation leading to the death. If the poison is taken orally, then it gets lodged in the Hrudaya or heart (stomach according to some scholars), and if the poison is transmitted by bite or puncture (as in case of being stung by a poisoned arrow), it gets lodged in the place of the bite (at the time of the death of the patient). [32]

Visha Marana Linga

The signs indicating of (imminent) death of a poisoned patient:
• Niloshta – Blueness of the lips
• Danta shaitilya – looseness of the teeth
• Kesha patana – falling of the hair
• Anga bhanga – breaking of the limbs
• Vikshepa – Rigor Mortise
• Shishiraina loma harsha – Absence of horipillation even if touched by cold things.
• Na abhi hate – non- formation of contusion marks in the body in reaction to blows
• Danda raji hate – absence of bleeding from ulcers
Listen to their line of treatment as being explained by me (hereafter).

24 Visha Upakrama

24 Visha Upakrama – Therapeutic Measures:
24 ways of treating poisoning:
In order to cure the patient afflicted with poison, the 24 therapeutic measures to be adopted are as follows:
1. Recitation of mantras
2. Arista (Tying an amulet)
3. Utkartana (excision of the art afflicted with the poisonous bite).
4. Nispidana (squeezing out blood from the place of the bite)
5. Chusana (sucking out the poison from the place of the bite)
6. Agni (cauterization)
7. Pariseka (bath with medicated water)
8. Avagaha (submerging in medicated water)
9. Rakta Mokshana (blood- letting)
10. Vamana (emesis)
11. Virechana (Purgation)
12. Upadhana (application of medicine after making an incision over the scalp)
13. Hrdayavarana (giving medicines to protect the heart);
14. Anjana (application of collyrium)
15. Nasya (inhalation of medicated oil. Etc)
16. Dhuma(smoking Therapy)
17. Leha (drugs in the form of linctus given for licking)
18. Ausadha(administration of anti- toxic drugs or wearing as an amulet)
19. Prashamana(sedatives)
20. Pratisarana (application of Alkalies)
21. Prativisha (administration of poisons as medicines to counteract the original poison);
22. Sanjna – Samsthapana (administration of medicines for the restoration of consciousness);
23. Lepa (application of medicines in the form of a paste or ointment) and
24. Mruta Sanjivana (measures for the revival of life of an apparently dead person).
Now listen to the details of these therapeutic measures with reference to the mode and place of their application (as described hereafter [35- 37].

Details of Therapeutic Measures (Arishta, Utkartana, Nispidana & Cusana):

Before the spreading of the poison from the place of the bite, the venika (string or rope) is tied (at the proximal part of the bite), the site of the bite is excised unless it is a vital part (marma) and the poison is sucked out with the help of mouth filled with the flour of barely or dust. [38- ½ 39]

Blood letting therapy Etc:
Thereafter, blood letting is performed by-
• Pracchana (Scratching with the rough- surfaced instruments)
• Srunga (application of horn)
• Jalauka (application of Leeches) or
• Sira Vyadhana (Venesection)
The blood afflicted poison causes vitiation of other tissue elements in the body leading to death therefore, if the blood does not come out of the site of bite, then Praharshana (rubbing therapy) is employed let the blood to flow out, for this purpose rubbing is done with the help of the powder of
Shunthi – Ginger
Pippali – Long pepper fruit – Piper longum
Maricha – Black pepper fruit – piper nigrum
Griha Dhuma – suit
Rajani (Turmeric) – Curcuma longa
5 types of salt (Saindhava, Samudra, Sauvarcala, Bida and Audbhida) and
Vartaka (seeds)
If there is excess of bleeding, then cooling paste of vata, etc is applied externally.
The blood is the vehicle of poison as the wind is the vehicle of fire with the help of Pradeha (application of ointment) and Seka (Effusion) which are cooling in effect, the blood etc coagulated and so it arrests the virulent spread of the poison.
As a result of spreading of the poison, the patient suffers from
Mada – intoxication
Murccha – fainting
Vishada – depression and
Hrdaya Drava – Tachycardia
Application of cooling therapies alleviates such complications the patient is fanned till horrification takes place because of its cooling effect. [½ 39- 43]

Cheda (Excision):
As a tree stops growing as soon as its root is cut, similarly, the (effect of) poison does not grow or spread (get aggravated) as soon as its site (of bite) is excised the process of Suction induces the poison mixed with blood to flow out.
Simile: As the flow of water is arrested by a dam, so also the flow and spread of poison is arrested by tying the Aristas, cauterization causes burning of the poison located in the skin and the flesh, Srvana (drugs used to cause exudation of liquids from the body) helps the following out of poison from the blood.
Emesis helps in the instantaneous elimination of poison taken orally. In the second stage of poisoning, purgation therapy helps in its elimination. [44-45]

Hrudayavarana (Protection of Heart).
In the beginning, the heart of the patient is protected, and whatever is available for the protection of the heart is administered to him. Honey, Ghee, Bone marrow, Milk, red juice squeezed out of the meat of cow is given to him for the protection of the heart. He is given the blood of goat, etc Ashes or mud diluted with water to drink immediately.
In the third stage of the spread of the poison, the patient is given Ksharagada (recipe of which will be described in the verses 101- 104) along with honey and water. This recipe removes edema, and it is lekhana (which scrapes out unwanted waste products from the body).
During the fourth stage of the spread of the poison, the patient should take the juice of cow dung along with the juice of Kapittha (Feronia limonia), Honey and ghee
During the fifth stage of the spread of poison, the patient is given therapies for the revival of his consciousness. For this purpose, the patient is given to drink the potion prepared of
Rajani (Turmeric) – Curcuma longa
Manjistha – Rubia cordifolia,
Maricha – Black pepper fruit – piper nigrum and
Pippali – Long pepper fruit – Piper longum added with cow’s bile. [According to Chakrapani, Rajani (turmeric) added with cow’s bile is to be used for Aschyottana etc]
At the end the patient is given a potion containing poison to drink if he is afflicted by the poison caused by bite (Damsa), if he is afflicted by the poison taken orally, then he is made to be bitten by a poisonous animal. [46- 50]

Revival of an apparently dead person

If the Patient appears to be bled on account of Poisoning, then he is given the powder of the seed of Palasha – Butea monosperma mixed with 1/2 the quantity of the bile of Peacock.
Alternatively, he may be given Vartaku (Seeds), Phanita (a preparation of Jaggery), Agara Dhuma (Kitchen soot), cow’s bile and Nimba – Neem (Azadirachta indica) (in powder form).

The pill made of Surasa (Tulsi), Granthi (Vacha), Haridra (turmeric – Curcuma longa), DaruHaridra – Berberis aristata, Madhuka– Licorice and Kushta – Saussurea lappa mixed with cow’s bile is useful like Amruta (Ambrosia), and it is given to the patient for his revival.

Alternatively, this pill is prepared of Surasa, granthi, Haridra (turmeric – Curcuma longa), Daru Haridra – Berberis aristata,Madhuka– Licorice – Glycyrrhiza glabra and Kushta – Saussurea lappa by Triturating with the juice of the flower of Sirisha and the juice of kakandaka.

If the patient appears to be dead because of hanging (Udbandhana), Poisoning or drowning in water (Jala Mruta), then the potion comprising Kakanda, Surasa, gavaksi, Punarnava – boerhavia diffusa, Vayasi and Fruits of Sirisha (Albizzia lebbeck Benth.) Is administrated in the form of Lepa (ointment) along with Ausadhi (application of the paste over the head after making incisions in the form of Kakapada or the paw of a crow), Nasya (inhalation therapy) and Pana (drink), for his revival [51-53]

Mrita Sanjivana Agada

Taken in equal quantities, these herbs are to be triturated, made into a paste, and pills are made out of this paste:
Plava- Nyctanthes arbor-tristis
Sthauneyaka – Clerodendrum infortunatum
Kanksi (Saurastrika)
Saileya – Tritonium
Tagara – Valerian wallichi
Dhyanaka – Coriandrum sativum
Kunkuma – Crocus sativus
Mamsi – Nardostachys jatamamsi
Agara (inflorescence) of Surasa – Cinnamomum zeylanicum
Ela – Elettaria cardamomum Maton
Ala (Haritala)
Kusthaghna (Khadira (Acacia catechu))
Brihati – Solanum indicum
Flower of Sirisha (Albizzia lebbeck Benth.)
Srivestaka –
Padama- Carati,
Suradaru (Cedrus deodara),
Padma – Lotus (Nelumbo nucifera)- Kesara,
Savaraka (a type of Lodhra (Symplocos racemosa)),
Manahshila – realgar
Kaunti (Renuka) – Vitex agnus-castus
Juice of the flowers of Jati – Jasminum grandiflorum and
Arka – Calotropis gigantea,
Haridra (turmeric – Curcuma longa),
Daruharidra – Berberis aristata
Pippali – Piper longum,
Jaa (Haridra),
Mudgaparni – Phaseolus trilobus
Chandana (Sandalwood – Santalum album),
Madhuka– Licorice – Glycyrrhiza glabra,
Madana – Randia dumetorum
Sindhuvara (Vitex negundo),
Lodhra (Symplocos racemosa),
Mayuraka (Apamarga – Achyranthes aspera),
Gandhaphala (Priyangu (Callicara macrophylla)),
Rasna (Vanda roxburghi / Pluchea lanceolata) and
Vidanga – Embelia ribes is collected in Pushya constellation.
It cures all types of poison, makes a person victorious revives a person who is apparently dead because of poisoning and cures fever.
If inhaled, applied externally as an ointment, carried in the body as an amulet, smoked or kept in the house, it annihilates the afflictions by evil spirits, poisons, germs, Alaksmi (inauspiciousness), karmana (black Magic), Mantra (incantations recited to inflict injury to others), fire, thunder bolt and enemies.
It counteracts the evil effects of bad dreams and Stri Dosha (poisons secretly given women) it prevents untimely death, fear of water and fear of thieves.
It endows a person with wealth, food grains and success in undertaking it promotes auspiciousness, nourishment and longevity. This excellent recipe is called Mrita Sanjivana (recipe that helps in the revival of a dead person). Lord Brahma rounded this recipe prior to the discovery of Amrita (ambrosia).
Thus, ends the description of the recipe called Mrit sanjivani Agad. [54-60]

Poisoning treatment according to location

Treatment of Poisoning according to Locations:
Dhamani Bandha (application of tourniquet)
Avamarjana (causing downward movement of poison) and
Atma Raksa (protection of the patient from the attacks of evil spirits including microbes) is done with the help of Mantras.
In the beginning, the Dosha in whose place the poison is located is treated.
If the poison is located in the site of
• Vata Dosha – drink the paste of Nata (Valeriana wallicii) and Kushta added with curd.
• Pitta – ghee, honey, milk and water to drink. He should also be given bath and affusion (with cold water).
• Kapha – Ksaragada (Antidotes of Poisons containing alkalies), fomentation therapy and venesection therapy.
If the patient is afflicted with Dushi visha (slow acting artificial poison) or if the poison is located in the aspects of the situation in the beginning, the Dosha of the locality (where the poison is located) is carefully alleviated so that the effects of poison which is located there are not augmented. [61-64]

Nasya and Anjana Therapies

When the channel of circulation of Kapha gets vitiated by poison, then this causes obstruction in the channel because of which the movement of Vata Dosha gets obstructed. As a result of this, the patient breaths as if he is going to die very soon if he is free from signs and symptoms of incurability, then incisions is made on his scalp resembling the paw of the crow (Kakapada), and 1 Bilva of paste of Carmakasa (Saptala – Ophiorrhiza mungos – Mongoose plant) is applied over it he may also be given pradhamana (a type of inhalation therapy in which the recipe in powder from is blow into the nostrils) with Katabhi, Trikatu (Sunthi – Zingiber officinale, pippali – Piper longum and Maricha – Black pepper fruit – piper nigrum) and Kathala. Over the Kaka-Pada (incisions in the scalp), the meat of goat, cow buffalo or cock is applied which will absorb the poison from the body.
If there is obstruction to the nose, eyes(vision), ears, tongue and throat, then the patient is given Nasya (inhalation therapy) with the help of the paste of Vartaku, Beejapoora – Citrus medica, Jyotishmati – Celastrus paniculatus, etc
If there is obstruction to the eyes (vision), then the collyrium prepared of Devadaru – Cedrus deodara, Sunthi – Zingiber officinale, Pippali – Long pepper fruit – Piper longum, Maricha – Black pepper fruit – piper nigrum, Haridra (turmeric – Curcuma longa), Karavira – Nerium indicum, Karanja (Pongamia pinnata), Nimba – Neem (Azadirachta indica) and Surasa by Triturating with goat’s urine is applied over the eyes.[ 65- 69]

GandhaHasti Agada

Sveta (Katabhi – Clitoria ternatea), Vacha – Acorus calamus, Ashwagandha – Winter Cherry / Indian ginseng (root), Hingu, Amrta, Kushta – Saussurea lappa, Saindhava, Lasuna – Garlic, Sarsapa – Brassica campestris, Pulp of Kapittha (Feronia limonia), Tuntuka, seeds of Haridra (turmeric – Curcuma longa) and Vamsa Locana is taken in equal quantities, and impregnated as well as triturated with goat’s urine, cow’s bile and horse bile alternatively for 7 days each.Its application as collyrium instantaneously cures the poison located in the head.
This collyrium also cures all types of fever, afflictions by evil spirits and Graha(supernatural bodies), Apasmara (epilepsy), different eye- diseases like Kaca, patala and Nilika, diseases of the head, other eye-diseases like Suskaksipaka, Pilla, Arbuda, Arma, Kandu and Tamas, Ksaya (consumption), Asthenia, alcoholism, anaemia and unconsciousness.
External application of this recipe cures ulcers caused by a poisonous arrow ailments caused by poisons transmitted through licking and bite or by poisons taken orally.
To cure swollen piles, its paste is applied over the anus if there is obstructed labor or if the foetus is dead, its paste is applied in the vagina of women to cure coryza, it s paste is applied over the forehead.

Application of its paste cures:
Vruddhi (enlargement of scrotum),
Kitibha (a type of skin) disease,
Kushta (obstinate skin diseases including leprosy),
Shvitra (leucoderma),
Vicharchika (Eczema) etc
This recipe which is an antidote of poisons is called Gandhahasti.
Simile given: As trees are destroyed by an elephant, so also all the ailments caused by poisoning are cured by this recipe.
Thus, ends the descriptions of the recipe called Gandha Hasti. [70- 76]

Maha Gandha Hasti Agada

The recipe called Maha Gandhahasti comprises 60 ingredients viz
Patra – Cinnamomum tamala Nees and Eberum
Musta (Cyperus rotundus)
Ela (Elettaria cardamomum Maton)
5 types of exudates
Chandana (Sandalwood – Santalum album)
Tvak – Cinnamonum zeylanica
Utapala – Nymphaea alba
Ushira – Vetiver – Vetiveria zizanioides
Vanya-Nakha (Sen’s edition reads Vayahra-Nakha)
Deva daru – Cedrus deodara
Kanaka – Datura metel
Kunkuma – Crocus sativus
Dhyanaka – Coriandrum sativum
Kustha –Sausserea lappa
Priyangu (Callicara macrophylla)
Tagara – Valerian walichii
(26-30) 5 parts of Sirisha (Albizzi lebbeck Benth.)(Viz flower, fruit, leaf, root and bark)
Sunthi – Zingiber officinale
Pippali – Piper longum
Maricha – Black pepper fruit – piper nigrum
Ajaji – Cuminum cyminum
Sveta (white variety of aparajita) – Clitoria ternatea
Katabhi – Clitoria ternatea
Karanja – Pongamia pinnata
Lata Karanja (Pongamia pinnata)
Raksoghni – Acorus calamus
Sindhu- varika
Rajani (turmeric) – Curcuma longa
Surasa – Cinnamonum zeylanica
Manjistha – Rubia cordifolia
Resin of nimba – Azadirachta indica
Vamsa tvak
Ashwagandha – Winter Cherry / Indian ginseng (root) – Withania somnifera
Hingu – Asa foetida
Amlavetasa – Garcinia pedunculata
Madhuka – Madhuca longifolia
Somaraji – Psoralea corylifolia
Vacha – Acorus calamus
Ruha and
This recipe having infallible effect was taught to Varisravana or Kubera (the celestial treasurer) by lord Tryambaka (Siva) during Pushya constellation, these ingredients are to ground by adding cow’s bile, and piles is made out of his past.
This recipe can be taken internally in the form of a drink (by diluting with liquids) or applied in the form of a collyrium in the eyes or applied externally in the form of a paste to achieve success in all therapeutics.
If used constantly (regularly) along with wholesome diet of useful ingredients in appropriate quantity.
It cures eye diseases like Pilla, Kandi, Timira, Ratryandha, Kaca, Arbuda, and Patala. It cures
Vishama Jwara (irregular fever),
Avipaka – indigestion,
Dadru (ring worm),
Kandu (Pruritus),
Atisara – chronic diarrhoea and
Pama (scabies)
It instantaneously cures the ailments caused by the poisons of rats, spiders, all types of snakes, and poisons from all types of roots and rhizomes.
A person having smeared his body with the Paste of this poison can catch a (Poisonous) snake and drink its venom with immunity with the help of this recipe, even a person facing death, regains life lives till the ends of his span of life, free from any disease.

In abaddha (constipation or obstruction in rectum), the paste of this recipe is applied over the anus. In Mudha Garbha (obstructed labour), this paste is applied over the vagina. Application of its paste over the forehead of a patient with poisonous fainting bring about quick results.

For curing ailments caused by poisoning, a wise physician should smear musical instruments like Bheri, Mrdanga and Pataha with the paste of this recipe and make sounds with them. He should also smear this paste over the umbrellas, banners and flags, and exhibit them before the patient suffering from poisoning.
The ace where this recipe is kept becomes absolutely inaccessible to Bala Grahas (celestial bodies afflicting children), Rakshas (evil creatures), karmana (black magic of enemies), Vetala (hobgoblins) and Atharvana Mantras (Spells of evil charms).
The person with this recipe cannot be adversely affected by any of the lantes (positioned in the antagonistic houses of the zodiac sign), fire, weapons, kings (with evil motives) and thieves.
The place where this recipes called MahaGandhaHasti is kept becomes the abode of Lakshmi (Goddess of wealth)
While triturating the ingredients of this recipe, the following Mantra should be recited:
“Mama Mata Jaya Nama Jayo Nameti Me Pita.
So, Ham Jaya-Jaya- putro Vijayo’ tha Jayami Ca.
Namah urusasimhaya vishve Visvakarmane.
Tejo Vrsakaeh Saksattejo Brahmendrayoryame.
Yatha’ ham Nabhijanami Vasudeva- arajayam.
Matusca panigrahanam Samudrasya ca sosanam.
Anena satyavakyena sidhyatamagado hyayam.
Hilimilisamsprste raksa sarvabhesajottame svaha.’’

The name of my mother is Jaya, and that of my father is Jaya. Since I am the son of jaya and jaya, I am called Vijaya, and I shall become victorious. I offer prayer to Narasimha Vishnu who is VisvaKarma (the builder of the universe), Sanatana (eternal), Krsna, Bhava (one who endows auspiciousness) and Vidhava (one who endows wealth). I am the glory of VrushaKay (agni) and I am the direct glory of Brahma, Indra and Yama. I never know the defeat of Vasudeva, or the marriage of my mother or the drying of the ocean by these statements of truth, let this recipe of antidote achieve its success. Hilimili is the Beeja mantra (seed) of this incantation, and its association may protect this recipe which is the best among the remedies. ’’
Thus, ends the description of the recipe called MahaGandha Hasti Agad. [77- 94]

Poisoning complication treatment

Treatment of Complications Caused by poisoning:
Treatment for breathing difficulty and fever caused due to poisoning:
Intake of Rishabhaka – Manilkara hexandra, Jivaka – Malaxis acuminata, Bharngi, Madhuka– Licorice, Utpala (Nymphaea alba), Dhanya – Coriandrum sativum, Kesara, Ajaji, Sitagiri (Sveta-Aaparajita) and the pulp of kola in the form of a drink cures Shwasa (dyspnoea), fever, etc, caused by poisoning.

Treatment for hiccup caused by poisoning:
Intake of Hingu – Asa foetida and Krshna along with honey and sugar, or the juice of Kapittha (Feronia limonia) and Saindhava along with honey and sugar cures fever, hiccup, dyspnoea and cough caused by poisoning.
Intake of the seed-pulp of Kola, Anjana, Laja, Utpala (Nymphaea alba) Honey and ghee in the form of a linctus cures hiccup caused by poisoning.

Treatment for Edema:
Dhuma Varti (inhalation of the fume an incense stick) of Brihati – Solanum indicum, Kantakari – Solanum xanthocarpum and Leaves of Adhaki—Cajanus cajan cures hiccup caused by poisoning
The fumigation with Nata – Valerian walichii, Kushta – Saussurea lappa, head of Bhujaga ati (snake having two heads or fangs) and flower of Sirisha (Albizzi lebbeck Benth.) by adding ghee is called ‘Dhumagada’, and it cures all types of poison and oedema.

The fumigation with Jatu (Shilajatu), Sevya, Patra – Cinnamomum tamala Nees and Eberum., Guggulu (Commiphora mukul Engl.), Bhallataka (Semecarpus anacardium Linn.), flower of Kakubha, Sarja (Vateria indica)-Rasa and Sveta is an excellent remedy for curing poisoning by snake and rat bite it also helps in destroying the insects (counteracting their poison) and Vastra- Krimi (Yuka or lice). [95-100]


Kshara derived by decanting the ashes of a tender tree of palasha – Butea monosperma is added with equal quantities of
• Lohita mrit (Gairika),
• Haridra (turmeric – Curcuma longa),
• Daru Haridra – Berberis aristata,
• Manjari(inflorecense) of the white variety of Surasa,
• Madhuka– Licorice – Glycyrrhiza glabra,
• Laksha,
• Saindhava – rock salt
• JataMamsi – Nardostachys jatamamsi ,
• Harenu – Pisum sativum,
• Hingu – Asa foetida,
• Sariva – Indian Sarsaparilla – Hemidesmus indicus,
• Ananta Mula – Cordia walichii,
• Kushta – Saussurea lappa,
• Sunthi – Zingiber officinale,
• Pippali – Long pepper fruit – Piper longum,
• Maricha – Black pepper fruit – piper nigrum and
• Bahlika (Kunkuma Kesara).
This recipe is made out of this paste and dried in shade.

Intake of this cures:
• Sarva visha shotha – inflammation caused by all types of poisoning
• Gulma – phantom tumor
• Tvak dosha – skin diseases
• Arsha – piles
• Bhagandara – Fistula- in- ano
• Pleeha – splenic disorders
• Shotha – oedema
• Apasmara – epilepsy
• Krimi roga – parasitic infestation
• Bhuta roga – affliction by evil spirits
• Svara bheda – hoarseness of voice
• Pandu – anemia
• Manda agni – suppression of the power of digestion
• Kasa – cough and
• Unmada – insanity
Thus ends, the description of Ksharagad [101- 104]

Precautions for the King

The Statements made in brief above pertain to the treatment of ailments caused by the poisons taken orally, transmitted through bites and stings, and applied externally in general. Now, which are to be elaborated separately
The king is exposed to danger of being poisoned through food and regimens by the attendants secretly employed in his palace by another king having enmity, and also form his own wives. Therefore, the residues are carefully examined. [105- 106]

Signs of a Poison Giver

A person who behaves in an extremely suspicious manner, who speaks too much or who speaks very little, who has lost luster of his face and who exhibits changes in his characteristic features is a poison giver. [107]

Visha Ahara Pareeksha

Examination of poisoned food:
When a person exhibiting the characteristic features of a poison- giver is located then the food etc served by him should not be taken immediately, but a part of it is thrown over fire.
If the food is poisoned, then the flame of the fire exhibits abnormal characteristics like different colors of peacock feather.
The smoke which comes out of such fire is sharp, intolerable and dry. The smoke smells like a corpse. The flame makes a cracking noise it moves spirally or it gets extinguished.
The poisoned food when kept in a pot gets discolored, and flies sitting on it succumb to death. When this poisoned food is seen by crows, their voice becomes feeble, and when the chakora bird sees it, its eyes become discolored.
If the poison is added to drinks like alcohol, then blue lines appear over its surface or it becomes discolored.
A person’s own shadow is not reflected through such drinks or the shadow is reflected in a distorted manner. If such drinks are added with salt, then there is effervescence. [108- 111]

Other Characteristics of Poisoned food, Drinks etc
The smell of poisoned food and drinks causes
• Shiro ruk (headache)
• Hrudi ruk (pain in the cardiac region) and
• Murcha (fainting)

If touched, such poisoned food and drinks cause
• Shotha – oedema and
• Supta anguli – numbness in the hands,
• Daha – burning sensation and
• Toda nakha – pinching pain in the fingers, and
• Nakha bheda – cracking of the nails

When put into mouth, these poisoned food and drinks cause
• Osta chimchima – tingling sensation in lips
• Jada – swelling, stiffness
• Shuna – numbness and
• Ostha vivarna – discoloration of the tongue
• Dvija harsha – tingling sensation in the teeth
• Hanu stambha – stiffness of the jaw bones (mandibular joints)
• Aasya daha – burning sensation in the face
• Lala – salivation and
• Gala vikara- morbidity in the throat

If the poisoned food and drinks have entered into the stomach, then the patient suffers from:
• Vaivarnya – discoloration
• Sweda – sweating
• Sadana – Asthenia
• Utkleda – Nausea
• Drshti uparodha – impairment of the vision
• Hrdaya uparodha – arrest of cardiac functions and
• Bindu shata chiyate angam – appearance of drop like impels all over the limbs

If the poisoned food and drinks enter into the colon, then the patient suffers from
• Murccha -fainting
• Mada – intoxication
• Moha – unconsciousness
• Daha – burning sensation
• Bala nasha – weakness
• Tandra – drowsiness and
• Karshya – emaciation

The patient suffers from Pandu (anemia) when the poisoned food and drinks get localized in the abdomen
If the tooth brushing twig is poisoned, when the brush– tip gets withered, and the patient suffers from oedema of the teeth, lips and muscles of the mouth
If the oil for application over the head is poisoned, then the patient suffers from hairfall, headache and tumors in the head.

If the collyrium is poisoned, then the patient suffers from burning sensation, excess lacrimation and excess production of sticky material, oedema and redness in the eyes.
Intake of poisoned food vitiates the Kostha (gastrointestinal tract) and external application of poisoned material afflicts the skin in the beginning.

If the materials for the bath, massage, unction, clothing, ornaments and Varnaka (cosmetics) are poisoned, then the patient suffers from pruritis, pain, urticaria, pimples, horripilation, tingling sensation and oedema.
Burning sensation and pricking pain in the hands and feet, fatigue and indigestion are caused by the poisoning of the earth (where one moves), shoes, horse, elephant, weapons, flags, bed and seat.

A poisoned garland loses its aroma and gets withered soon. It causes headache and horrification. The poisoned fume causes stiffness in the channels of circulation and impairment of the functioning of the nose and eyes.
If the water of wells and ponds are poisoned, then the water becomes foul-smelling, dirty and discolored. Intake of this poisoned water causes:
• Shotha – oedema
• Urticaria and
• Pimples and
• Even death

If the poison has reached the stomach, then the physician in the beginning should administer emetic therapy. If the poisonous material is located in the skin, then ointments and fomentation therapy, etc is administered. These therapeutic measures are administered, keeping in view the nature of the Doshas and the strength of the patient. Thus, the specific nature of the root poisons is explained. [112- ½ 123]

Jangama Visha

Jangama Visha – Animal Poisons:

Snake poisoning

Now hear about the exposition of animal poisons. In the beginning, the snakes and the special treatment for snakebite will be explained.
Snakes are classified into 3 categories, viz.,
Darvikara has a spoon like hood and its poison is dry and pungent because of which it causes Vayu aggravation
Mandali has a rounded hood and its poison is sour and hot because of which it causes Pitta aggravation
Rajiman has varieties color with drop like spots on its body and its poison is sweet and cold because of which it causes Kapha aggravation

The bite by Darvikara snake is characterized by subtle black marks of the teeth (fangs), absence of bleeding, swelling having the shape of a tortoise and manifestation of diseases caused by Vata.

Bite by Mandali snake is characterized by gross and deep marks of teeth (fangs), oedema, yellowness of the place of bite, yellow coloration of the excluding blood and manifestation of diseases caused by pitta.
Bite by Rajiman snake is characterized by sliminess, stable oedema, unctuousness, Paleness, thickness of the exuding blood and manifestation of diseases caused by Kapha [123 ¾ – 129]

Identification of sex and Breed of biting Snake:
The male snake is characterized by round hood, big body, hissing sound, and upward look, grossness of the head and evenness of the body.
The female snake has opposite characteristic features.
The Napumsaka (impotent) snake is timid in nature.

Patient bitten by a female snake looks downwards, he becomes voiceless and he trebles. Bite by a male snake produces opposite symptoms. If a person is bitten by a Napumsaka (impotent) snake, then the symptoms of both of these (bite by male and female snakes) in a combined form are manifested.

In a person bitten by a pungent snake, the face becomes pale; the lips get swollen and the eyes become black. A person yawning, anger, inflammation of the epiglottis (Upajihva) and hematuria

Godheryaka is a hybrid offspring of male snake and female Godha (Iguana), and is quadrupled. Its bite produces signs and Symptoms like those of a black snake (Krishna Sarpa). There are several other types of hybrid snakes.
If the mark of the snakebite is very deep, if the lace of bite is circularly elevated, if it is painful, if it is elongated and if it is with all the teeth marks, and if it is spreading in nature, then the condition is serious. Other types of bite are not so serious. [130 -135]

Virulence of poison on the Basis of Age of Snakes:
The poison of black snakes when they are young, of the Gonasas when they are old, and of the rajiman types of snakes when they are of middle age, is highly virulent like that of Asi visha (snakes whose poison is transmitted through their very sight and breath resulting in instant (death).

Color of Fangs and Quantity of Poison:
Snakes have 4 fangs. Of these the lower left one is white in color, the upper left one is yellow in color, the lower right one is red in color, and the upper right one is brownish in color.
The quantity of poison contained in the lower left fang is equal to the number of drops which fall from the hair of the tail of a cow when it is dipped in water and then flirted up. The poison contained in the upper left, lower right and upper right fangs is respectively double, 3 times and 4 times of the poison contained in the power left fan. The colors of the sites of the bite are the same as the color of the fang through which the person is bitten.
The poisons coming out of these fangs, viz lower left, upper left and upper right are progressively more and more virulent, and more and more incurable. [137- 139]

Insect Poison

Keeta (insects) are so called because they are procreated form the Kit or waste products like stool and urine of the snakes.
In brief, these are of 2 types viz,
Dushi visha (those causing chronic poisoning) and
Prana Hara (those causing death).

The insects belonging to Dushi visha (causing chronic poisoning) category cause red, white, black or brownish black coloration over the body part which is bitten, and the area becomes covered with pimples / boils. The patient suffer from
• Kandu – itching
• Daha – burning sensation
• Visarpa – erysipelas
• Apaki – suppuration and
• Kuthitam – sloughing


The insect bite of pranahara (causing death) category produces expanding oedema, as it happens in snake bite, associated with strong smell and bleeding. The patient suffers from heaviness of the eyes, fainting, pain and dyspnoea.
The patient afflicted with Dushivisha (bite of insects causing chronic poisoning) suffers from morbid thirst and anorexia in excess [140-143]

Spider poison – Lutha Visha

If the centre of the bite-place is blackish brown, surrounded by a network, if the area appears as if burnt, if it gets suppurated quickly, if it is associated with slough and oedema and if the patient has fever, then it is to be diagnosed as spider bite of Dushi- visha (slow poisoning) type.

General symptoms of spider bite:
• Shopha – oedema,
• Sveta asita rakta pita pidaka – impels of white, black, red or yellow color,
• Shwasa – terminal dyspnea,
• Daha – burning sensation,
• Hikka – hiccup and
• Shiro graha – stiffness of the head [144- 146]


Rat Poison – Akhu Visha

The bite by the rat of Dushi visha (slow poisoning) type produces signs and symptoms like-
• Adamshat shonita pandu – exudation of blood having pale yellow color from the site of the bite,
• Mandalani – circular patches,
• Jwara – fever
• Aruchi – anorexia
• Loma harsha – horripilation and
• Daha – burning sensation.
If person is bitten by a rat of Asadhya (incurable) or Pranahara (causing death) type, then he suffers from
• Murcha – fainting
• Anga shotha – oedema of limbs,
• Vaivarnya – discoloration of the skin
• Kleda – sloughing
• Shabda ashruti – deafness
• Jwara – fever
• Shiro gurutvam – heaviness of the head
• Lala praseka – excessive salivation and
• Asrk chardi – haematemesis [147- 148]

Chameleon Poison

Bite by a Krukalasaka (Chameleon) causes brownish black or black or variegated coloration, unconsciousness and diarrhoea [149]

Scorpion Poison – Vruschika Visha

Sting of a scorpion (of Dushi- visha or slow poisoning type) causes burning sensation like in the beginning, and thereafter, pinching pain which spreads upwards instantaneously. At the end, the burning sensation and pain is localized at the site of the sting.
If stung by scorpion of Asadhya (incurable) type, the patient loses his power of vision, smell and taste his muscle tissue gets sloughed and falls out; he suffers from excessive pain and he succumbs to death. [150-151]

Kanabha (Hornet) Poison

The sting of a Kanabha (hornet) causes
• Visarpa – erysipelas
• Shwayathu – oedema
• Shula – colic pain
• Jwara – fever
• Chardi – vomiting and withering out of the site of the bite. [152]

Ucchitinga (Crab) Poison

Sting of an Uccitinga (poisonous crab) causes-
• Hrsta roma – horrification
• Stabdha linga – stiffness of the phallus
• Bhrsha aarti – excessive pain and
• Shita udaka neva sikta – a feeling as if the whole body is effused with cold water [153]

Manduka (Toad) Poison

If bitten by a poisonous toad, then there will be the mark of only 1 fang.
There will be
• Shunah sa ruk – oedema with pain
• Pitaka sa trt – yellow colouration with morbid thirst
• Chardi – vomiting and
• Nidra – excessive sleep [154]

Poison of Fish and Leech

Bite or sting by poisonous fish causes-
• Daha – burning sensation
• Shopha – oedema and
• Ruja – pain
Bite by poisonous leeches causes
• Kandu – itching,
• Shotha – oedema,
• Jwara – fever and
• Murcha – fainting. [155]

Poison of House- Lizard and Centipede

The poison of Grha- Godhika (house lizard) causes
• Daha – burning sensation
• Toda – pricking pain
• Sveda – sweating and
• Shotha – oedema
The poison of Sata- Padi (centipede) causes
• Sweda – sweating
• Rujam – pain and
• Daha – burning sensation at the site of bite. [156]

Mosquito poison

Mosquito bite (sting) causes
• Kandu – itching,
• Shotha – oedema and
• Manda vedana – mild pain
The bite of the mosquito of Asadhya (incurable) variety of Keetas (insects) [157]

Makshika (Bee or fly) poison

Bite by Makshika (Bee or fly) causes pimples of Blackish brown color with Instant exudation. The Patient suffers from
• Daha – burning sensation,
• Murchha – fainting and
• Jwara – fever
The poison of the sthagika type of bee (fly) causes death. [158]

Features of incurable poisonous bites

Persons bitten by snakes in a cremation ground, under a scared tree, near an ant- hill, in the place of Yajna (vedic sacrifice), Ashrama (hermitage) or temple, during the time of conjunction of 2 fort-nights (viz, full moon day and new-moon day), mid day, mid night or eight- day of the lunar fort night, and in the abodes of Pakhandas (hermits of Kapalika sect) and others do not get cured.
Persons afflicted with the bite by Ashi visha transmitting poison through vision, breath, waste- products and simple touch and persons bitten over the vital organs succumb to death instantaneously.
The description given above (regarding the place, time and nature) of transmission is applicable to any type of snakes. [156- 161]

Augmentation and Diminution of poisoning Effects:
The effects of poisoning gets aggravated by fear, intoxication, weakness, heat, hunger and thirst of the patient similarly, if the physical constitution and time of bite are similar to the poison, then the effects get augmented.
If the snakes, etc., are afflicted by fast moving water, if they are emaciated, if they are fearful, if they are afflicted by the attacks of mongoose, if they are old or too young or if they have shed their scales, then the poison transmitted by them has mild effects.

The poison pervades the entire body of the snake, and it comes out through the fangs because of their anger. But when they bite for food or when they are fearful, then the poison does not come out of their fangs. [162-164]

Characteristic signs of poisons

Nature (Vatika, etc) of Poisons and Their Characteristic Signs:
The poison of ucchitinga (poisoning crabs) and scorpion is dominated by Vayu that of Keeta (insect) is dominated by Vayu and pitta, and the poison of Kanabha (hornet), etc, is dominated by Kapha.
To treat the patient afflicted with poison, the physician should employ therapeutic measures having attributes opposite to the aggravated Doshas which can be ascertained from the manifested signs and symptoms.

Vayu- aggravating poison results in
• Hrt pida – pain in the cardiac region
• Urdhva anila – upward movement of the Vayu
• Stambha – stiffness
• Sira aayama – dilatation of the veins,
• Asthi parva ruk – pain in the bones and joints,
• Giddiness
• Cramps and
• Blackish brown colouration of the body

Pitta- aggravating poison exhibits –
• Sanjna nasha – Unconsciousness
• Ushna shwasa – Hot breath
• Hrt daha – Burning sensation in the cardiac region
• Katuka aasya – pungent taste in the mouth
• Damshavat aavarana – Cracking of the tissue in the lace of the bite
• Shotha – Oedema and
• Rakta pita shotha – Red as well as yellow coloration of the skin at the site of the bite

Kapha- aggravating poison exhibits:
• Chardi – vomiting
• Arochaka – anorexia
• Hrllasa – Nausea
• Utklesha – Salivation
• Stretching
• Gaurava – heaviness
• Sa shaitya Mukha madhurya – feeling of cold and sweet taste in the mouth. [165- 169]

Line of treatment

Visha Chikitsa Suthra – Line of Treatment:
In case of affliction by the Vata- aggravating poison, the patient is treated by the application of Khanda (Paste of sugar or the sesame) over the wound, massage with sesame oil, Nadi and Pulaka types of fomentation therapies and nourishing diet.

Pitta Dosha Visha Chikitsa:
In case of affliction by the Pitta- aggravated poison, the patient is treated with affusion which is very cold and which is Stambhana (arresting the movement of fluids in the body) and the application of cold ointments.

Kapha Dosha Visha Chikitsa:
Afflication by Kapha- aggravating poison is treated with Lekhana (which scrapes out the tissues), Chedana (which causes incision in the tissues), fomentation and emetic therapies.
For all the types of poison evading the various parts of the body, excepting the poison of crabs and scorpions, generally cooling therapy is useful.
In case of scorpion poison, the patient is given fomentation and massage and affusions with warm ghee mixed with salt. He is given ghee for food and drinks.

For the poison of crabs, the above mentioned therapies (described for scorpion- bite) is administered. In addition, the patient is rubbed downwards (from the proximal side to the distal side) with sand mixed Luke- warm water. The site of the bite is then covered with a thick layer of this sand mixed with Luke- warm water. [170- 174]

Poison of Rabid Dog and other wild Animals:
Because of aggravation of all the 3 Doshas and impairment of tissue elements, the rabid dog suffers from
• Shiro abhi tapa – burning sensation in the head
• Lala srava – excessive salivation and
• Adho vaktra – drooping of the head
The same symptoms are also manifested in a person bitten by the rabid dog.
There are other wild animals whose poison causes aggravation of Kapha and Vayu. Bite by these animals causes pain in the cardiac region, headache, fever, stiffness, morbid thirst and fainting. [175-176]

Signs and Symptoms of Poisonous and Non-poisonous bites:

The symptoms of poisonous bites are-
• Kandu – Itching
• Nistoda – pain
• Vaivarnya – discoloration of the skin
• Supti – numbness
• Kleda – sloughing
• Ruksha – dryness
• Vidaha shopho – oedema associated with burning sensation
• Raga – redness,
• Ruk – pain and
• Paka – suppuration
• Sphota – adenitis
• Contraction
• Cracks in the site of the bite,
• Pustular eruptions,
• Karnika (polyp), circular and elevated patches and
• Jwara – fever.
The opposite symptoms pertain to non- poisonous bites. [177-178]

Visha Chikitsa – Treatment of Poisoning:
For the treatment of poisoning, all the 24 therapeutic measures described earlier (vide verse nos. 35-37) is employed in appropriate stages. Now hear about the other treatment measures to be employed in appropriate stages.

Hrud gata Visha – If there is burning sensation in the cardiac region, and salivation, then purgation and emetic therapies are to be employed frequently at appropriate stages. After Shodhana, the patient is given Samsarjana- Krama (rehabilitating diet).

Shirogata Visha – If the patient is bitten by the poisonous creature at the head / scalp, then the scalp is scarified (scrapped) and the meat as well as blood of cock, crow and peacock is applied over it. If the bite is in the upper part  of the body, then the feet is scarified and the meat as well as blood of the above mentioned birds is applied over it.

Chakshu gata Visha – The poison afflicting the eyes gets cured by the application of the collyrium (Anjana) prepared of Pippali – Long pepper fruit – Piper longum, maricha – Piper nigrum, Kshara, Vacha (Acorus calamus Linn.), Saindhava and Shigru – Moringa oliefera which are made to a paste by triturating with the bile of Rohita type of fish.

Kantha gata Visha If the poison has reached throat, then the patient is given green Kapittha (Feronia limonia) along with sugar and honey. If it has reached the stomach, then the patient is given one Pala of the powder of Nata (Valeriana wallicii) along with sugar and honey.

Koshtagata Visha – If the poison has reached colon, then the patient should take Pippali – Long pepper fruit – Piper longum, Haridra (turmeric), Daru Haridra (turmeric – Curcuma longa) and Manjistha – Rubia cordifolia, taken in equal quantities and made to a paste by triturating with cow’s bile.

Raktagata Visha – If the poison has reached blood, then the patient should take root, bark and tender branches of Selu (Slesmataka), Badara – Zizyphus jujuba and Udumbara – Ficus racemosa along with Katabhi.

Mamsagata Visha – If the poison has reached muscle tissue, then the patient the should take the potion containing Bala – Country mallow (root) – Sida cordifolia, Maha-Bala – Country mallow (root) – Sida cordifolia,Madhuka– Licorice – Glycyrrhiza glabra,Madhuka– Licorice – Glycyrrhiza glabra and Nata (Valeriana wallicii). [179- 188]

Sarpa visha Aushadha

Medicines for snake poisoning:
If Kapha is aggravated because of poisoning, then the paste of pippali – piper longum, Nagara – Zingiber officinale and Kshara (Alkali preparation) triturated with butter is applied over the site of bite for Pratisarana (exudation of liquid).
Administration of Jatamamsi, Kunkuma, Patra – Cinnamomum tamala Nees and Eberum., Tvak, Rajani (Turmeric), Nata (Valeriana wallicii), Chandana (Sandalwood – Santalum album), Manahshila, Vyaghra Nakha and surasa (made into paste by triturating with water, or administered orally or through Nasya, Anjana or Lepa (external application in the form of paste) cures all types of oedema and poisons.
Chandana (Sandalwood – Santalum album), Tagara, Kushta – Saussurea lappa, Haridra (turmeric – Curcuma longa), Daru- Haridra (turmeric – Curcuma longa), Tvak, Manah-Sila, Tamala, Juice of Kesara, Sardula- Nakha or Vyaghra-Nakha (Nakhi) is made to a paste by triturating with Tandulambu (rice-wash). Administration of this recipe cures all the types of poisons as the thunder- bolt of Indra destroyed all the Demons.

White variety of Maricha – Black pepper fruit – piper nigrum is impregnated with the juice of the flower of Sirisha (Albizzia lebbeck Benth.) for 7 days. Administration of this potion in the forms of Nasya (inhalation therapy), pana (taking internally) and Anjana (collyrium) is useful in snakebite.
Intake of the potion containing 2 Palas of ghee and honey is useful even for a patient bitten by Taksaka (celestial snake).

To a patient bitten by a Darvikara type of snake, the root of Sindhuvara (Vitex negundo) and white variety of Giri Karnika (Kutaja) is administered internally. He is given Pakala (Kushta – Saussurea lappa) along with honey for inhalation.

A person afflicted with the poison of a Mandali Snake should take the potion comprising Manjistha – Rubia cordifolia, Madhuyasti – Glycrrhrizza glabra, Jivaka – Malaxis acuminata, Rishabhaka – Manilkara hexandra, Suar, Kashmarya and the still root of Vata – Ficus bengalensis.

The potion comprising Sunthi – Zingiber officinale, Pippali – Piper longum, Maricha – Black pepper fruit – piper nigrum, ativisha – Aconitum heterophyllum, Kushta – Saussurea lappa, Grha- Dhuma (Kitchen- soot), Harenu, Tagara – Valeriana walichii, Katuka and Honey cures the poison of a Rajiman type of Snakes.

The potion comprising Griha-Dhuma (Kitchen-soot), Haridra (turmeric – Curcuma longa), Daruharidra – Berberis aristata and Tanduliyaka along with its root is mixed liberal quantity of honey and ghee. Intake of this cures a patient even if he is bitten by Vasuki (a celestial snake). [189 – ½ 199]

Medicines for Poisons of Insects etc

Application of the paste of the bark of Ksheeri- Vrukshas (trees having Milky –Latex, viz, Nyagrodha, Udumbara, Asvattha, Vetasa and Plaksa) after purification (administration of 5 elimination therapies) cures insect poison application of the paste of pearl prepared by triturating with water is excellent for curing oedema, burning sensation, pain and fever.

Chandana – Santalum album, padmaka,Ushira – Vetiver – Vetiveria zizanioides, Sirisha (Albizzia lebbeck Benth.), Sindhuvarika,Ksira- sukla, Nata (Valeriana wallicii), Kushta – Saussurea lappa, Patala – Stereospermum suaveolens, Udichya and Sariva – Indian Sarsaparilla is made to a paste by triturating with the juice of Selu.
This recipe is useful in the form of all therapeutic measures for the treatment of the poison of the spider. After proper examination, this recipe is used appropriately in Lepana (external application), etc.

Intake of Madhuka– Licorice, Kushta – Saussurea lappa, Sirisha (Albizzia lebbeck), Udichya and Patala – Sterospermum suaveolens, along with Nimba – Neem, Sariva – Indian Sarsaparilla – Hemidesmus indicus and honey cures the poison of spiders.

Flower of Kusumbha – Carthamus tinctorius, Go-danta (tooth of a cow), Svarna- Ksiri, stool of Kapota, Danti – Baliospermum montanum, Trivrt – Operculina turpethum and Saindhava cures the Karnika (granulomatus growth) in the wound caused by the bite of insects and spiders.

The decoction, paste and powder of Katabhi, Arjuna (terminalia arjuna), bark of Sirisha (Albizzia lebbeck Benth.), Selu and the barks of late bearing trees(Nyagrodha, Udumbara, Asvattha, Vetasa and Plaksa) cure ulcers caused b the bite of insects and spiders.

Tvak (cinnamon) and Nagara – Zingiber officinale taken in equal quantities is made into a fine paste, and taken along with hot water, which cures poison of all types of rats.the recipe comprising the paste of the fruit of Kutaja – Connessi (Holarrhena antidysenterica Wall.), Tagara, Jala- Malini (Devadataka or Devadali) and bitter variety of Iksvaku is administered in the form of pana (taking internally), pradhamana (a type of Inhalation therapy), etc. Which cures the poisons of scorpions, rats, spiders and snakes This recipe is like Ambrosia, and it also cures indigestion of Gara (artificial poisoning).

All the above mentioned recipes are useful for the ailments caused by the poison of Krkantaka or Krkalasa (Chamelion) and are used according to the Doshas provoked by such poison.
The recipe comprising the stool of Kapota, Matulunga – Lemon variety – Citrus decumana / Citrus limon, the juice of the flowers of Shirisha (Albizzi lebbeck Benth.), Shankini – Canscora decussata and the milky latex of Arka – Calotropis gigantea, Sunthi –ginger, karanja – Pongamia pinnata and honey cures scorpion poison .

The paste of the fruit of Sirisha – Albizzia lebbeck prepared by triturating with the milky latex of Sunthi – Zingiber officinale is useful in curing the ailments caused by frog- bite.

The paste of the root of the white variety of Bh(m)andi(Aparajita), Sunthi, Pippali – Long pepper fruit – Piper longum, Maricha – Black pepper fruit – piper nigrum, and honey is useful in curing fish- poison.

All the therapeutic measures prescribed for the treatment of insect- bite are equally good for the treatment of leech- poison. In such cases, generally, therapeutic measures for the alleviation of Vayu and Pitta are useful.
The therapies prescribed for scorpion- bite are useful for Crab- bite. Therapeutic measures prescribed for rat bite are useful for hornet- bite. [199 ½- 211]

Best antidote

Paramo Agada – Remedy Par Excellence: Best antidote:
Vacha (Acorus calamus Linn.), Bark of Vamsa, Patha – Cissampelos parriera,Nata (Valeriana wallicii), inflorescence of Surasa, Bala – Country mallow (root) – Sida cordifolia, Maha-Bala – Country mallow (root) – Sida cordifolia, Nakuli,Kushta – Saussurea lappa, Sirisha (Albizzia lebbeck Benth.), Haridra (turmeric – Curcuma longa), Daru-Haridra (turmeric – Curcuma longa), Guha, Atiguha, Sveta, Ajagandha, Silajatu, Kattrna, Katabhi, Ksara, (alkali reparation), Grha- Dhuma(Kitchen- Soot) and Manah-Sia is made into a paste by attributing with the bile of Rohita (a type of fish). This is called “Paramo Gada’ remedy par excellence. Administration of this recipe in the form of Nasya (inhalation therapy) Anjana (collyrium), Leech (external application). Etc., is useful in the poisonous insect bites like Visvambharas. [212- 214]

Recipe for Centipede Poison:
Use of Svarjika Kshara of the goat’s droppings, Surasa and Aksi- Pidaka (a type of Simbi having white and yellow color) triturated with the supernatant part of madira (a type of alcohol) is useful in centipede- poison. [215]

Recipe for house – lizard poison:
The recipe comprising Kapittha (Feronia limonia), Aksi-Pida(a type of Simbi having white and yellow color), seeds of Arka – Calotropis gigantea, Sunthi – Zingiber officinale, Pippali – Long pepper fruit – Piper longum, Maricha – Black pepper fruit – piper nigrum, Karanja (Pongamia pinnata), Lata Karanja (Pongamia pinnata), Haridra (turmeric – Curcuma longa) and Daru Haridra (turmeric – Curcuma longa) cures the poison of House- lizard. [216]

Recipes for all Poisons
Tanduliyaka triturated with the juice of Kakanda (Kakatinduka) is useful in all types of poison. Similarly, Vayasa-Piluka (Kakamachi) triturated with peacock- bile is useful in all types of poison. [217]

Pancha Shireesha Agada

The excellent recipe containing [the 5 parts, viz.,] fruits, roots, barks, flowers and leaves of Sirisha (Albizzia lebbeck Benth.), all taken in equal quantities is added with ghee this is called Pancha- Sirisha (Albizzia lebbeck Benth.) It is the most effective remedy for all types of poison.
Thus, ends the description of Panch Shirisha Agada [218]

Recipe for poisons of Nails and teeth:
A person injured by the nails (claws) and the teeth of quadrupeds and bipeds suffers from oedema, suppuration, exudation of liquid material from the place of bite and fever. Application of the paste of soma-valka, Ashva- Karma, go Jihva, Hamsa-Padi, Haridra (turmeric – Curcuma longa), Daru- Haridra (turmeric – Curcuma longa) and Gairika cures these poisons of nails and teeth. [219- 220]

Shanka Visha

Shanka-visha (Fear of Poison) and its Management:
When a person is bitten by something (non- poisonous creature) in pitch darkness, the fear or suspicion (Sanka) of being bitten by a poisonous creature causes manifestation of symptoms of pseudo- poison in the form of fever, vomiting, fainting, burning sensation, prostration, unconsciousness and diarrhea. This condition is called Sanka-visha (fear- poison).
For the treatment of this ailment, the wise physician should console the patient. He is given sugar, purified sulphur, Draksha – Raisin – Vitis vinifera, ayasya, Madhuka– Licorice – Glycyrrhiza glabra to drink honey along with water impregnated with Mantra to drink. This sanctified water is sprinkled over his body,he is consoled and made cheerful. [221- 223]

Diet and regimen

Diet and regimen in poisoning care:
For a person suffering from ailments caused by poisoning Shali rice, Shastika rice, kora- dusa and Priyangu (Callicara macrophylla) are useful as food, and Saindhava (rock salt) is given as sat. As vegetables, Tanduliyaka, Jivanti – Leptadenia reticulata, Vartaka, Sunisannaka, Cuccu, Manduka- parni and Kuaka (Karavellaka or Patola) are useful. To cause sourness in food, Amalaki – Phyllanthus emblica and Dadima – Pomegranate – Punica granatum are useful. Mudga and Harenu is used for preparing vegetable- soup for him the meat of Ena, Sikhi, Svavit lava, Tittiri and Prsat is used for preparing meat soup.
This meat- soups and vegetable- soups is sizzled by adding ingredients which are antidotes of poisons. Food ingredients which do not cause burning sensation (Avidahi) are useful in the treatment of a person suffering from ailments caused by poisons.
The patient should avoid such diets, ingredients of which are mutually contradictory(Viruddha), and intake of food before the previous meal is digested he should also refrain from anger, hunger, fear, exhaustion and sexual intercourse he should, specially, avoid sleep during the day time, even if he is cured of the poison. [224- 228]

Signs and Symptoms of poison in Quadrupeds:
If quadrupeds are afflicted by poisonous bites, then symptoms like
• Muhurmuh shiro nasya – repeated jerks of the head,
• Shotha – oedema,
• Srasta ostha karnata – dropping of the lips and jaw,
• Malaise,
• Roma upagamana – hair fall,
• Glani – exhaustion,
• Arati – Disliking for every thing,
• Vepathu – trembling and
• Bhrama – giddiness appear [229-230]

Treatment of Poisoned Quadrupeds:
The recipe comprising
Devadaru (Cedrus deodara),
Haridra – Curcuma longa
Daru- Haridra (Berberis aristata),
Chandana (Sandalwood – Santalum album),
Rasna (Vanda roxburghi / Pluchea lanceolata),
Ajaji – Nigella sativa
Guggulu (Commifora mukul Engl.),
Sugarcane juice,
Tagara – Valeriana walichii
Saindhava and
Ananta is made to a powder and mixed with cow’s bile and honey.
This recipe is used in all the different forms of therapeutic measures for the treatment of the poisoned quadrupeds. [231- 232]

Garavisha Lakshana

Garavisha Lakshana – Signs Symptoms and treatment of Gara Type of Poison:
Women, in order to gain favour from their husbands, at times, administer their sweat, menstrual blood and different types of waste products of their body along with food. Even (as skies) they lying in the hands of enemies, sometimes, administer various types of Gara (artificial poison) along with food preparations.
Because of this poisons, a person suffers from
• Pandu – anaemia,
• Karshya – emaciation,
• suppression of the power of digestion,
• Visha – poisoning,
• Palpitation of vital organs (like heart),
• flatulence,
• oedema in the hands and feet,
• Jathara (obstinate Syndrome),
• Tuberculosis,
• Gulma (phantom tumor),
• Consumption,
• Jwara – fever

Signs and symptoms of such other diseases
Such a patient usually dreams of cats, Jackals, wild animals, mongooses and monkeys, and dried tree, etc., and withered trees. If he is of white complexion, he dreams himself to be black complexion. He dreams himself to be without ears and nose, and to be with distorted sensory organs.

When an intelligent physician comes across such a patient, enquiry is made about type of food he had taken in whose company and when he had taken the food. Having ascertained these facts, the patient should instantaneously be given emetic therapy by the physician.
He is given fine powder of copper along with honey for clearing the heart. After the heart is cleansed, the patient is given 1 Sana of the Bhasma (its Powder) of gold,this old Bhasma immediately counteracts all the poisons including Garas (artificial poisons). The poison does not stick to (afflict) his heart if he has taken gold Bhasma, as water does not stick a lotus leaf.

Buffalo ghee cooked with Nagadanti, Trivrit – Operculina turpethum, Danti – Baliospermum montanum, Dravanti – Croton tiglium, Milky late of snuhi – Euphorbia neriifolia, and Madana- phala – Randia dumetorum, along with 1 Adhaka of cow’s urine is useful in curing patients suffering from the poisons of snakes and insects, and from Gara (artificial poisons), [233- ½ 242]

Amruta Ghrita

1 Adhaka of Ghee (according to Mana- Paribhasa the quantity of ghee is 2 Adhakas) is cooked by adding the paste of 1 Aksa each of the
Bark of Sirisha (Albizzia lebbeck Benth.),
Sunthi – Zingiber officinale
Pippali – Piper longum
Maricha – Black pepper fruit – piper nigrum,
Haritaki – Terminalia chebula,
Bibhitaka – Terminalia bellerica,
Amalaki – Phyllanthus emblica,
Chandana (Sandalwood – Santalum album),
Utpala (Nymphaea alba),
Bala – Country mallow (root) – Sida cordifolia,
Maha Bala – Sida rhombifolia
Sariva – Indian Sarsaparilla – Hemidesmus indicus,
Ashpota – Clitoria ternatea
Nimba – Azadirachta indica,
Patala – Stereospermum suaveolens
Adhaki – Cajanus cajan,
Murva – Linemia accidissima,
Vasa – Adhathoda vasica,
Surasa – Cinnamonum zeylanicum
Vatsaka (Holarrhena antidysenterica Wall.),
Patha – Cissampelos parriera,
Ankola – Alangium salviifolium
Ashvagandha – Withania somnifera,
Root of Arka – Calotropis gigantea,
Yasti- madhu – Glychrizza glabra,
Padmaka – Prunus puddum
Brihati – Solanum indicum,
Kovidara – Bauhinia variegata
Satavari – Asparagus racemosus,
Katabhi – Solanum xanthocarpum
Danti – Baliospermum montanum,
Apamarga – Achyaranthes aspera,
Rasanjana (Aqueous extract of Berberis aristata),
Sveta- Bhanda
Asva khuraka
Kustha – Sausserea lapppa,
Daru – Cedrus deodara
Priyangu – Callicarpa macrophylla,
Vidari (Ipomoea paniculata / Pueraria tuberosa),
Exudate of madhuka – Madhuca longifolia,
Fruits and bark of karanja – Pongamia pinnata,
Haridra (turmeric – Curcuma longa)
Daru- Haridra – Berberis aristata and
Lodhra (Symplocos racemosa),
2 Adhakas of water,
3 Adhakas of goat’s urine and
3 Adhakas of cow’s urine

When used in the form of pana (drink), Abhyanga (massage) and Navana (inhalation therapy):
Visha – poisons
Apasmara – epilepsy
Kshaya – consumption
Unmada – insanity
Seizures of evil sprits,
Gara visha – Artificial poisons,
Udara (obstinate abdominal disorders including ascities),
Pandu – anemia,
Krimi – parasitic infestation,
Gulma (phantom tumor),
Pliha – splenic disorders,
Urustambha (stiffness of the thighs)
Kamala – Jaundice,
Stiffness of Jaws and shoulders etc.,
It helps in the revival of persons who appear to be dead because of poison and hanging.This excellent recipe of medicated ghee is called Amrta-ghruta and it is like Ambrosia for curing all type of Poisons.
Thus, ends the description of Amrita Ghruta [242 ½ – 249]

Snake bite preventive measures

Preventive measures against snake bite:
Thus it is said that one should move about with an umbrella during the day time and with a ratting stick in hand at night so that with their shade and sound respectively, the snakes get freighted and go away [without biting the person].
Immediately after the snake- bite, the person should bite the snake itself (if possible) or otherwise bite a cold of earth. Thereafter, a tourniquet is tied above (at the proximal end of) the site of bite and the lace of the bite is incised as well as cauterized.
Wearing of diamond, Marakata (emerald), Sara, icuka, visha- Musika, (visha-Mani), Karketana(Padma – Lotus (Nelumbo nucifera)- Raga, Sara-Mani(A type of pearl or gem collected from the head of the snake), Vaidurya(Lais Lauli), Gaja Mani (different types of gems which are antidotes of poisons) and Varasadha (Talisman or amulet containing herbs which are antidotes of poisons) gives immunity against poisons.
Keeping (domesticating) birds like Sarika (Myna), Krauncha (crane), Peacock, Swan and parrots is also useful to overcome poisons. [250- 253]

Thus, details of 2 categories of poisons along several types of medicines to cure the ailments caused by these poisons are described in these objectives of these remedies.Can overcome these poisons by the application of his knowledge and experience. [254]

Thus, ends the 23rd chapter of the Chikitsa Sthana dealing with the treatment of poisons of Agnivesha’s work as redacted by Master Charaka.

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