Vata's predominant site is the colon. Ayurvedic basti involves the introduction into the rectum of herbal concoctions of sesame oil, and certain herbal preparations in a liquid medium. Basti, is the most effective treatment of vata disorders, although many enemas over a prescribed period of time are usually required. It relieves constipation, distention, chronic fever, cold, sexual disorders, kidney stones, heart pain, backache, sciatica and other pains in the joints. Many other vata disorders such as arthritis, rheumatism, gout, muscle spasms and headaches may also be treated with basti.
Vata is a very active principle in pathogenesis. If we can control vata through the use of basti, we have gone a long way in going to the rootcause of the vast majority of diseases.
Vata is the main etiological factor in the manifestation of diseases. It is the motive force behind the elimination and retention of faeces, urine, bile and other excreta.
There are eight main types of basti, according to traditional texts, each with their own indications and contra-indications as listed below.
General Indications for Basti:
Constipation low back ache gout rheumatism sciatica arthritis nervous disorders vata headache emaciation muscular atrophy
General Contra-Indications for Basti (include but are not limited to the following):
Enema therapy should not be used if the patient is suffering from diarrhoea, bleeding of the rectum, chronic indigestion, breathlessness, diabetes, fever, emaciation, severe anaemia, pulmonary tuberculosis, old age or for children below the age of seven years.
For decoction enemas: debility, hiccough, hemorrhoids, inflammation of anus, piles, diarrhea, pregnancy, ascites, diabetes and some conditions involving painful or difficult breathing.
For nutritional enemas: diabetes, obesity, lymphatic obstruction, ascites.
For urethra or vaginal enemas: diabetes
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