Virechanopaga Gana: Purgation Aiding Herbs: Review, Benefits

This article is written by Dr MS Krishnamurthy MD(Ayu), PhD.
Virechana or Purgation is the classical therapeutic procedure employed for evacuating the excess accumulated Pitta dosha along with bowel. This has its role with respect to Vata dosha also but in lesser extent. 

Virechanopaga means the phenomenon which helps as an adjuvant to facilitate the process of purgation or laxation. In other words virechanopaga drugs facilitate the smooth and easy outgoing of the bowel in its safe way to the extent of our desire.

Such drugs are of utmost utility in  regulation of Virechana procedure and hence best result can be expected out of the treatment protocol in Panchakarma therapy (five purificatory therapies).

Virechanopaga Gana

Let us review the quality and action of these drugs one by one in brief-
Draksha – Raisin – Vitis vinifera-Dry fruits
Purgative, anti flatulent, digestive, carminative, nutritious, complexion enhancer, hemetenic, expectorant etc.

Kashmarya (Gmelina arborea Linn.)-Dry fruits
Coolant, laxative, energizer, anti inflammatory, stabilizer etc.

Parushaka (Grewia asiatica Linn.)- Falsa Fruits
Mild laxative, nutritive, coolant, bulk enhancer etc.

Abhaya – Haritaki – Terminalia chebula – Fruit rind
Anti flatulent, carminative, scraping, bitter tonic, eye tonic, laxative etc.

Amalaka (Embiica officinalis Gaertn.) – Fruits
Rejuvinative, eye tonic, energizer, stabilizer, anti oxidant, hemetenic etc.

Bibhitaki (Terminalia belerica Roxb.)-Fruit rind
Digestive, stimulant, eye tonic, anti spasmodic, carminative etc.

Kuvala – Zizyphus sativa-Fruits/Seeds
Anti inflammatory, digestive, nutritive, mild laxative, anti spasmodic etc.

Badara – Zizyphus jujube-Fruits/Seeds
Mild laxative, anti spasmodic, anti inflammatory, digestive, nutritive etc.

Karkandhu (Zizyphus nummularia W. & A.) –Fruits/Seeds
Anti inflammatory, energizer, cardiac tonic, anti flatulent, instant nourisher, diaphoretic etc.

Peelu (Salvadora persica Linn.) –Stem or leaves
Laxative,  expectorant, scraping, anti tussive, instant energizer etc.

Qualities, Actions

Qualities in general and actions of Virechanopaga gana drugs:
 The herbal drugs belonging to this group are sweet in taste and are cold in potency. They mostly undergo Sweet kind of metabolic change (Madhura vipaka); they are cold-heavy-motile and thick in nature.

They are nutritive, laxative, instant nourishing, bulk enhancing and anti inflammatory in action.

Therapeutic uses

Therapeutic uses of Virechanopaga gana drugs:
These kind of drugs are useful in constipation, hemorrhoids, abdominal pain, mal-digestion, IBS, lethargy, mal absorption disorders etc.

Ayurvedic medicines

Formulations containing Virechanopaga drugs :
Few of the important formulations derived out of these drugs are Drakshadi kashaya, Peelubadaradi kashaya, Phalarikadi kashaya, Triphala choorna, Abhaya modaka, Abhayarishtha etc.


Disadvantages of Virechanopaga gana drugs:
If the  drugs of this group are administered in large amount it may cause severe debility, fatigue, unconsciousness etc. So the formulations are to be prescribed with caution in pregnants, children and old aged people.

Simple formulations

Simple formulations that can be made from the above drugs and their application in routine practice:
The drugs like Draksha-Hareetaki-Kashamarya are taken individually and decoction or cold infusion can be prepared. This can be administered in mild abdominal distension, colic pain, regurgitation etc. Fine paste of the drugs are also equally beneficial in this regard.

Formulation development opportunities:
In whole world significant percentage of people are suffering from constipation and potent and safe laxatives are the need of the hour. So some of the effective tablets, medicated powders or syrups can be designed out of these drugs or in association with drastic purgatives like Trivrit -Jayapala – Snuhi – Sonamukhi etc and best herbal product can be popularized.
Click to consult Dr MS Krishnamurthy MD(Ayu), PhD

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