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The Classification of Disease and Examination


A Practical Approach to The Science of Ayurveda

  1. VI) Classification of diseases on the basis of distress

Diseases are again divided into three types based on distress: adhyatmika, adhibhautika and adhidaivika.

1) Diseases caused due to psycho-somatic miseries (adhyatmika roga): These are the diseases which arise due to mental and physical humors produced in the body. They are further divided into three types:

(i)   Hereditary diseases (adibala or vamsaja): Diseases which are due to vitiation of dosas present in the sperm and ovum of the parents at the time of conception, comes under hereditary diseases. Diseases such as thalassemia and bronchial asthma are hereditary. They are further classified into two types:

  1. a)    Maternal diseases (matrjd) – Which originate from the maternal side.
  2. b) Paternal diseases (pitrja) – Which originate from the paternal side,
  3. (ii)  Diseases since birth (janmabalaja or janmajdta): These diseases are due to an incompatible diet, lifestyle and carelessness followed during pregnancy. For example, blindness, muscloskeletal deformities and stunted growth,
  4. (iii) Diseases due to potent doqas (do$abalaja): These diseases develop from the vitiation of Vata and other dosas due to an incompatible diet, lifestyle and carelessness.They are further classified into two types:
  1. a)    Diseases originating in the abdominal region (amasayottha): These diseases develop in the abdomen from the stomach to the upper region of the small intestine (duodenum) and include cough, bronchial asthma and liver disorders.
  2. b)    Diseases originating in the large intestine (pakvasayottha): These diseases start from the large intestine and include constipation, flatulence, distention and so on.

2)    Diseases caused by physical miseries (adhibhautika roga): These are the pains and discomfort caused by trauma and other external injuries or by antagonistic men, cattle, birds, snakes and other animals. Accordingly, they are termed as external diseases (Oxantuja) or diseases caused by an antagonistic attack (sahghatabalaja), respectively. They are also further divided into two types :

(i)   Diseases due to an attack by an animal (vyalaja): The diseases which are produced due to attack and bite of tame and wild animals are termed vyalaja roga. These include attacks by animals and injuries by their nails, horns and bites, scorpion stings, snake poison, poisoning from other animals and several bacterial and viral diseases, (i i) Diseases due to an attack by a weapon (sastraja): Wounds produced from injuries from instruments and weapons, trauma, accidents, injuries caused by bomb blasts and shootouts come under this category.

The Classification of’Disease & I xaiiiiiialion

3)   Diseases produced by natural calamities (adhidaivika roga): Diseases that arise due to natural causes are included here. They arc again classified into three types:

(j)   Disorders related to the season (kalabalaja or rtuja): These diseases are din-to excessive rain, exposure to heat and cold, and due to mosquitoes and microorganisms present in the environment during these seasons. These arc air borne and due to heat stroke. They are again divided into two types:

(a)   Diseases due to climate changes (vayapanna rtu roga): Diseases which are produced due to abnormalities in climate (in a particular season at limes it is very hot or cold and at times it is not as it would have been expected) are vayapanna rtu roga.

(b)  Diseases in normal climatic conditions (dvayapanna rtu roga): Diseases which arise in normal climatic conditions (seasonal diseases) are avayapanna rtu roga. When diseases develop due to fluctuations in climate, at first instance treat them with specific medicines and if one does not recover, then use some other therapy. Treat diseases due to seasonal changes with medication suitable to that climate.

(ii) Diseases caused by supernatural agencies (daivabalaja roga): These are another type of adhidaivika roga which are believed in Ayurveda to be caused by divine or supernatural agencies, i.e., by the destruction and outburst of fire, air, space (ether), earth and water elements. Outbreak of diseases as a result of natural calamities come under this category, as does post-traumatic stress disorder, as they occur due to tumultuous disturbances caused by divine power. They arc again divided into two types:

(a)  Diseases caused by thunderstorms and fire (agnija): These diseases are produced by natural calamities related to thunder and fire, include electrocution.

(b)   Outburst of epidemic diseases (pi$acaja):T[\cse are diseases thai emerge as an epidemic due to the microbes present in the environment. They arc also classified in two ways:

  1.    Communicable diseases (samsargaja): Diseases due to direct contact or touch.
  2.     Air borne (Akasmika): Diseases which are suddenly generated due to the spread of microbes in the environment.

(iii) Diseases due to natural needs (svabhavabalaja roga): These are the third type of adhidaivika roga which develop due to natural needs of the body such as hunger, thirst, lust, anger, sleep and so on.