Hrsva Jadhya Meaning, Symptoms, Treatment

By Dr Raghuram Y.S. MD (Ay) & Dr Manasa, B.A.M.S
Hrsva Jadhya is an eye disorder which afflicts the vision. It is explained by Master Sushruta.
Hrsva means small.
Jadhya means dullness (in seeing things)

There is no detailed description of this disease in Ayurveda texts. The symptoms of this disorder have been enlisted by Sushruta. They are as below mentioned.
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Symptoms

Divaseshu krichrat rupani pashyet – The person finds it difficult to see in the daytime, this stands for jadhya part of the name of the disease.

Hrsvani Rupani Pashyet – The size of the things perceived is quite different and smaller than the size of the same object perceived by others. He sees the object smaller in size in comparison to their normal size. This represents the hrsva part of the name of the disease.
Read – Classification of Eye Diseases As Per Ayurveda

Combining these two symptoms together – the patient not only finds it difficult to see things and perceive them properly during the day time but also sees the objects small and tiny in comparison to their normal size and what is perceived by others (normal persons). These two are not separate symptoms but are jointly experienced by the patient.

There is a controversial opinion given by Master Videha about this condition. The explanation is totally in contrast to what Master Sushruta has explained.

Master Videha tells – ‘Among the four types of Naktandhya already explained earlier, Nakula and Hrsva Jadhya are considered as incurable’.

Here Master Videha particularly mentions Hrsva Jadhya as a type of Naktandya i.e. night blindness where one finds it difficult to see in the dark and during night time but he can see things in the day time. But Sushruta’s explanation of Hrsva Jadhya tells that the person feels it difficult to see in daytime which puts the condition under the category of Divandhya or day blindness.
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Sanskrit Verses

Description by Sushruta and Videha

We can combine both concepts of Sushruta and Videha and explain this condition in this way. Hrisva Jadhya is an eye disorder wherein –

  • Difficult to see things and perceive them in the daytime.
  • Difficult to see things in the day time and see them as small and tiny. But the patient cannot see anything at night. This is why Videha has considered it as a form of night blindness.
  • The objects are seen small and tiny at day time.

To differentiate this condition from divandhya – day blindness and naktandhya – night blindness, all the above said symptoms should be considered together i.e. all 3 symptoms should be present in a given patient simultaneously.
Read – Shuktika Eye Disorder – Definition, Symptoms, Treatment

Hrsva Roga explained by Master Vagbhata

Master Vagbhata has explained the same condition in the name of ‘Hrsva Roga’. This condition is caused by predominantly vitiated pitta. The patient sees the larger objects as smaller.

Prognosis

This condition is said to be incurable.

Modern correlation

This condition can be closely compared to ‘Retinitis pigmentosa’ explained in modern medicine, especially a condition of Retinitis pigmentosa which is associated with formation of cataract and central opacity. This will explain why both day (partial) and night (total) blindness will be present in hrsva jadhya. It has been compared by some experts to ‘myopia’.
Read – Ayurveda Eye Treatment Types, Methods – Ashtanga Hrudaya Sutrasthana 23

Treatment

Hrsva Jadhya is said to afflict the 4th layer of the eye and is considered to be an incurable condition.

The treatment of this condition has not been explained in the Ayurveda treatises. But Tarpana treatment i.e. pooling of medicated ghee around the eyes has been tried by some physicians in this condition especially when this condition is considered to be myopia and have been found to provide symptomatic relief to an extent.

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