Article by Dr Raghuram Y.S. MD (Ay) and Dr Manasa, B.A.M.S
Shankha is an important Marma i.e. vital or delicate point in the body. It is located in the temple region of the head. Injury to the Shankha Marma takes away the life immediately. It is predominantly made up of asthi (bone).
भ्रुवोः अन्तयोः उपरि कर्ण ललाटयोः मध्ये शंखौ, तत्र सध्यो मरणम्।(सु.शा.६/२७)
Shankha Marmas are located above the outer end of the eyebrows, in between the karna (ear) and lalata (forehead). They are 2 in number.
Categories in which the Shankha Marma is included
i) Shiro-Greeva Gata Marma (Shiro = Head, Greeva = Neck)
ii) Asthi Marma – Shankha marma is predominantly made up of Asthi i.e. bones. The other elements namely Sandhi (Joints), Snaayu (ligaments, tendons, nerves), Sira (blood vessels, veins) and Mamsa (muscles) are also present but in a lesser proportion.
iii) Sadhyo Praanahara Marma – (Sadhyo – Immediate, Pranahara – life taking) Shankha Marma possesses a threat to life immediately after getting injured.
Pramana (measurement of Shankha Marma) –
Shankha Marma occupies a space of ½ angula dimension (approximately equal to the horizontal dimension or breadth of middle segment of one’s own middle finger)
Effect of Injury
तत्र सध्यो मरणम्।(सु.शा.६/२७)
Injury of Shankha Marma causes immediate death.
Modern Perspective (Practical anatomy) of Shankha Marma
Structures falling in the area of Shankha Marma –
- Temporal Region
- Superficial Meningeal arteries
- Middle Meningeal arteries
Though all the elements which comprise a marma i.e. sandhi (joints), mamsa (muscles), snayu (ligaments and tendons) and siraa (veins) are all present in the site of this Marma, it is predominant in the asthi (bones) making up the Shankha Marma, therefore it is an Asthi Marma.
When Shankha Marma gets damaged, the effect of injury will chiefly involve the joints around the eye in comparison to the extent of damage caused to other tissues.
Just Before Finishing
Shankha Marma is located in the temples, one on either side of the head. They are very delicate spots in the body and include important structures including Meningeal arteries. Any injury to the Marma instantly kills the person. Shankha Marma or the temple region should be protected from even smallest of injuries. Constant temporal headache, swelling and pain in the temples running a long course should be addressed without delay.
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