A REVIEW ON LEECH APPLICATION (JALAUKACHARANA) IN AYURVEDA AND SRI LANKAN TRADITIONAL MEDICINE

E R H S S Ediriweera

Abstract


Medicinal uses of leech application (jalukacharana) is practiced globally, including Sri Lanka and India, since ancient days. Details are collected from Ayurveda and Sri Lankan tradition medical books, physicians, internet and personal experience.  Detailed descriptions on this therapy is available in Sustruta Samhita. It is used in management of various diseases in all most all systems of the body, ears, head and eyes. According to Ayurveda these diseases are caused by vitiation of three dosha. Leech application (jalaukacharana); a type of blood letting therapy (rakthamokshana) which is a procedure of panchakarma, helps to eliminate vitiated dosha and toxins that accumulate in the body. Leech application removes some of these toxins accumulated in the body. Bioactive substances present leech saliva also exerts a therapeutic effect in several ailments. Though despised by most, medicinal leeches can be of immense benefit that may help people to surmount numerous health disorders.


Keywords


Leech application, Leech Therapy, Hirudotherapy, Bloodletting, Jalukacharana, Ayurveda

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