Integrated Management of Acute Sciatica

Author : Dr. Dasari Srilakshmi

Indian traditional system of medicine Ayurveda, defines health as the soundness of body (sharira), mind (manas) and self (atman). Physiotherapy helps improve patientís quality of life with massage, exercise and electrotherapy. Music is rhythmic sounds produced by various instruments. Sciatica (Grudhrasi) is a painful condition caused by the compression of lumbar or sacral nerves (L3-L5 and/or S1-S3) or by compression of sciatic nerve itself. Ayurvedic treatments designed for this case include abhyanga (oil massage) with Mahanarayana taila and Dashamula kwatha seka along with Interferential therapy (IFT), an electrotherapy modality in physiotherapy. Throughout the entire treatment session music for healing and meditation CD was played for 10 consecutive days. Abhyanga and seka are to alleviate pain (vatahara treatment) and IFT facilitates analgesic effect and promote healing process. Ragas/tunes like Madhyamavati, Shankarabharanam, Hindola and Kalyani etc. are significant for their soothing effects and tranquilize the mind. The pathway for pain is through spinothalamic tract; inhibition of pain may be by blocking its transmission, interrupting with heat (abhyanga and seka) and external sensory stimulus (IFT). The auditory stimulus through auditory nerve reaches auditory cortex and enhance to calm down the cortex activity resulting in manah prasannata (calming down/pleasantness of mind). Integrated system of approach; Ayurveda, Physiotherapy and Music therapy; is an innovative experiment with above mentioned treatments that are given externally without any internal medicament is discussed in this paper.

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