Repeated passage of small or large quantity of loose stools is known as diarrhea. Diarrhea is very common disease and is easy to cure. If not treated in time Diarrhea can cause excessive loss of water from body, results in dehydration and may cause even death.
Aetiological factors of Diarrhea:
- Nindniya Ahaar: Due to intake of heavy, very fatty or very dry, very hot or very cold meals.
- Virudhh Ahaar: Intake of incompatible food items in diet.
- Virudhh Vihaar: By eating before the previous meals have been digested or during indigestion.
- By the intake of an unbalanced diet.
- Use of impure and unhygienic water and food.
- Suppression of the psychological urges.
- Worm infestations.
Pathogenesis of Diarrhea:
Increased fluids of the body subdue the internal digestive fire, mix with the faeces, and being propelled down by the vayu, flow out excessively and is called as atisaar.
Prodromal Features of Diarrhea:
- Pricking pain in precordial, umbilical and anal regions and in abdomen as well as in flanks.
- Lassitude in the body.
- Obstruction in the passage of flatus and faeces.
- Flatulence and indigestion.
Types of Diarrhea:
Diarrhea is of six types according to ayurveda:
- Vaataj Atisaar
- Pittaj Atisaar
- Kaphaj Atisaar
- Sannipaataj Atisaar
- Shokaj Atisaar
- Ama Atisaar
- Vaataj Atisaar: Reddish, frothy, dry and mucus type of faecal matter is passed in small quantities again and again along with gripping pain and a gurgling sound in case of vaatik diaarhoea.
- Pittaj Atisaar: Yellowish, bluish or bloody stools are passed in case of pittaj diarrhea. It is also associated with thirst, fainting and a burning sensation and perianal suppuration.
- Kaphaj Atisaar: Whitish, viscid and cold faeces mixed with mucus and having a foul odour are passed in case of kaphaj diarrhea.
- Sannipaataj or tridoshaj Atisaar: Diarrhoea due to the vitiation of all the three doshas has fat and flesh washings like stools and has all the characteristics of all three doshas together and is difficult to cure.
- Shokaj Atisaar: The patient, in grief due to various causes, takes small quantities of meals which affects the digestive fire in the alimentary tract adversely and agitates the blood. Thereafter, this blood is passed from the anus mixed with stool or without faeces and with or without odour. This kind of atisaar is really difficult to cure.
- Amaj Atisaar: The sixth variety is caused by the doshas vitiated on account of improper digestion of food, which agitate the alimentary canal, the dhaatus and the malas; further they expel the faeces of various colours repeatedly with pain.
Physical examination of ama and pakva faeces:
The faeces mixed with the above doshas sink when dropped in water, have a very foul odour and are mucilaginous; this is called ama type of faeces.
If all the above mentions features are oppositely present, particularly that of lightness in density, it indicates pakva type of faeces.
Asaadhya Atisaar (Incurable Diarrhea)
Diarrhea is fatal in old persons with dyspnoea, colic, thirst, weakness and fever.
If the patent of diarrhea has symptoms like oedema, colic, fever, thirst, cough, dyspnoea, anorexia, vomiting, fainting and hiccough, it is also considered to be asaadhya.
When a patient of pittaj atisaar consumes excessively pittaj ahaar for a long time, a very serious kind of bloody diarrhea ensues which is again asaadhya.