Kasahara Gana Of Charaka – Cough Relieving Herbs

By Dr MS Krishnamurthy MD(Ayu), PhD.
According to Sanskrit-“Kaasan harati iti Kasahara”. It means the substance or medicament whixch helps to pacify or get rid of Kasa(cough) is called Kasahara.In other words the potent medicines which are capable of pacifying the complaint of cough are termed by the name Kasahara according to ayurveda. 

Ayurveda considers Kasa as a Vata kapha predominant condition and Avalambaka kapha and Prana-Udana vata are mainly involved. So the drugs mentioned here are capable of  normalizing their vitiated functions.

The drugs prescribed here are capable of strengthening the chest and potent enough to take out the phlegm accumulated in the chest and throat due to expectorating action. They are rejuvinative, immune modulator and energizers too.

Kasahara Gana

  Let us review the quality and action of these drugs one by one in brief-

1. Darksha – Raisin – Vitis viniferaDry fruits
Expectorant, tonic, rejuvinative, laxative, soothing, hemetenic etc.

2. Abhaya – Terminalia chebulaFruit rind
Laxative, digestive, carminative, anti flatulent, decongestant etc.

3. Amalaka (Emblica officinalis Gaertn.) -Fruits
Restorative, rejuvinative, complexion enhancer, immune modulator etc.

4. Pippali – Long pepper– Piper longumFruit
Expectorant, anti tussive, carminative, digestive, liver stimulant etc.

5. Duralabha (Fagonia cretica Linn.)-Roots
Decongestant, anti inflammatory, hemetenic, anti tussive etc.

6. Shrungi (Rhus succedanea Linn.) -Galls
Broncho dilator, decongestant, expectorant, scraping etc.

7. Kantakarika – Solanum xanthocarpumWhole plant or Fruits or Roots
Broncho dilator, anti inflammatory, analgesic, anti tussive, expectorant etc.

8. Vrushchira (white variety of Boerhaavia diffusa Linn.)-Whole plant or Roots
Rejuvinative, tissue replenisher, energizer, soothing, diuretic etc.

9. Punarnava (red variety of Boerhaavia diffusa Linn.) –Whole plant or Roots
Diuretic, soothing, tissue replenisher, energizer, rejuvinative, diuretic etc.

10. Tamalaki (Phyllanthus niruri Linn.) -Whole plant
Decongestant, liver tonic, liver stimulant, anxiolytic etc.

Qualities, Therapeutic uses

Qualities in general and actions of Kasahara Gana drugs:
Almost all the drugs in this group are bitter and pungent in taste and dry-light-hot in nature and they are pungent in metabolic change. Those wdrugs which are sweet in taste are undergoing sweet kind of metabolic change and are sweet on metabolic change,like Draksha, Amalaki,Tamalaki etc. So these drugs as per the nature have dual action for both dry cough as well as cough with expectoration.

Therapeutic uses of Kasahara Gana drugs:
They are effective in cold, nasal congestion, throat pain, laryngitis, pharyngitis, tonsillitis, chronic rhinitis, head ache etc.

Ayurvedic medicines

Formulations containing Kasahara drugs :
Pippalysava, Draksharishtha, Shringyadi choorna, Drakshavaleha, Amalaki rasayana, Vyaghree hareetaki, Duralabhasava, Trikatu choorna, Talisadi choorna, Sitopaladi choorna etc are the few formulations containing the herbs referred in this group.


Disadvantages of Kasahara Gana gana drugs:
The drugs which are causing dryness and that which act as expectorants should be used as per the need, on proper analysis of doshic dominance. If they are prescribed in contrary they may worsen the condition.

Simple formulations

Simple formulations that can be made from the above drugs and their application in routine practice:
Draksha kashaya with sugar candy works well in dry cough. Similarly the Pippali choorna with honey is effective in cough with expectoration. Tamalaki choorna or Kashaya is effective in allergic rhinitis and allergic bronchitis conditions.

Formulation development opportunities:
Depending upon the doshic dominance and chronicity of the illness or stage of cough potent dosage forms can be made like tablets, chewable tablets, linctus, lehya, syrup etc. The lozenges can also be made with suitable adjuvants and binding agents.
Click to consult Dr MS Krishnamurthy MD(Ayu), PhD

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