Haleemaka Causes, Symptoms, Prognosis

By Dr Raghuram Y.S. MD (Ay) & Dr Manasa, B.A.M.S
Haleemaka is a disease explained in the context of etiology and treatment of anemia. It is also believed to be an extension over anemia or jaundice. Thus haleemaka is a form of advanced anemia or jaundice. It is said to be caused when anemia is neglected or not treated properly.

Introduction

Some of the disease conditions which are caused as progressive stages of pandu (anemia), when pandu is not treated promptly or when pandu is neglected. They are –

Owing to its relationship to anemia and jaundice, halimaka can be considered as a disease caused due to morbidity of channels responsible to carry blood and rasavaha srotas i.e. channels responsible to carry lymph or food juices of nutrition. It is also a blood borne disease.

Since liver is one of the root place of blood carrying channels, halimaka too can be considered to have its origin from and located primarily in the liver.
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Symptoms

Haleemaka – symptoms
When anemia or jaundice is not treated properly or becomes chronic, it progresses into a condition called haleemaka.

When there is appearance of green, bluish black (grey) or yellow color in the body of the patient suffering from anemia (replacing pallor of anemia), the below mentioned symptoms are manifested
Bala kshaya – decrease in strength and immunity of the person
Utsaha kshaya – decrease in enthusiasm
Tandra – stupor, drowsy feeling
Mandagni – low digestion capacity
Mrudu jwara – mild fever
Streeshu aharsha – loss of interest in sex
Angamarda – pain in the body parts, pain as if someone has beaten with sticks
Daha – burning sensation in the body or body parts
Trushna – thirst
Aruchi – tastelessness
Bhrama – giddiness

Such a disease which is formed from neglected anemia and has above mentioned symptoms is called haleemaka.
Haleemaka is predominant in vata and pitta.
Haleemaka is caused due to severe vitiation of vata and pitta in the advanced stage of pandu roga.
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Alasa / Laaghavaka

Laaghavaka or Alasa
In Sushruta we can find the description of haleemaka in the name of Laaghavaka or Alasa.
Sushruta tells that the disease which is caused due to predominant vitiation of vata and pitta and presenting with greenish, yellowish or bluish discoloration of body or body parts is called Laaghavaka or Alasa.

Some authors also call it as Haleemaka.

Laaghavaka presents with below mentioned symptoms –
Jwara – fever
Angamarda – pain in body parts
Bhrama – giddiness
Daha – burning sensation
Tandra –  drowsiness
Kshaya – depletion of tissues

Lodhara

Lodhara
Acharya Vagbhata in Ashtanga Sangraha explains Haleemaka in the name of Lodhara.
He tells that – the disease, in which green, blue or yellow discoloration appears in pandu disease due to predominance of vata and pitta, is called lodhara.

Some authors also call it haleemaka or alasa.
It is characterized by the manifestation of the below mentioned symptoms –
Bhrama – giddiness
Trushna – thirst
Streeshu aharsha – lack of interest in sex
Mrudu jwara – mild fever
Tandra – drowsiness
Bala bhramsha – deterioration in strength
Anala bhramsha – diminution of digestive fire
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Causes

The causes for the manifestation of this disease have not been enlisted separately. The factors which cause pandu (anemia) can be assumed to cause haleemaka too.

Some of these causes are –

  • Indulgence in excessive exercise
  • Consumption of excessive foods rich in sour and salt tastes
  • Excessive consumption of alcohol / wine
  • Consumption of mud
  • Excessive consumption of spicy and corrosive foods
  • Excessive indulgence in day sleep

Treatment principles

Classical reference

Panchakarma treatment

Oleation – The patient of haleemaka disorder should be made to drink buffalo ghee processed with four times the quantity of each of Tinospora cordifolia juice and buffalo milk in metered doses until the person is saturated optimum consumption of ghee.

The patient of haleemaka disorder should be made to drink buffalo ghee processed with four times the quantity of each of Tinospora cordifolia juice and buffalo milk in metered doses until the person is saturated optimum consumption of ghee.

Purgation – after the patient has been subjected to oleation in the above said method, the patient should be administered with purgation using the powder of Operculina turpethum mixed in the juice of Emblica officinalis.

Anti vata-pitta diet – After the signs of proper purgation are obtained following the administration of the above said medicines, sweetened foods which balances aggravated vata and pitta should be served to the patient.

Medicinal ghee

Drakshaleham & sweetened ghee – After giving proper diet as said above, Draksha leham and ghee prepared with herbs having sweet taste should be given to the patient.

Basti

Yapana Vastis – Following this, the life supporting or curing enemas explained in Siddhi Sthana section of Charaka Samhita should be administered to the patient. Along with this, the medicated milk enemas and oil enemas should be administered.

Other medicines

Digestive fire enhancing drinks – Following this, the fermented drinks which is prepared with raisins etc herbs should be given to drink. These drinks will enhance the digestive fire and capacity of the patient.

Abhaya leha – Abhaya leha i.e. Agastya Haritaki explained in treatment of cough should be administered.

Medicated milk – Milk medicated with long pepper, licorice, roots of Sida cordifolia should be given to drink after properly deciding the predominant dosha and strength of the patient.

Paanaki

Paanaki also is a type of anemia or jaundice
Anemia in which there is excessive rise in temperature, diarrhea, yellowish discoloration on the outer and inner parts of the body and pallor eyes is called Panaki.

Modern Comparison

Comparison of above mentioned conditions with modern day diseases
It is very difficult to compare these Ayurvedic conditions exactly to any modern day diseases.

Below mentioned are the closest correlations.
Haleemaka is compared to chronic obstructive jaundice because even in this condition, the color of the body becomes green or yellow.
Other conditions with which haleemaka can be compared are
– advanced anemia,
– advanced jaundice
– neglected and complicated anemia
– hepatitis with anemia.
Some people have compared haleemaka with chlorosis.

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