Adhatoda Vasica -vasa Best Herb For Respiratory Disorders


Botanical Name: Adhatoda vasica, Justicia adhatoda

Family: Acanthaceae

Common names: Adatodai, Arusa, Vasaka, Adulsa, Adathoda, Adalodakam, Adusoge, Lions Muzzle, Stallions Tooth

Vernacular names:
Hindi- Adusa, English- Malabar Nut, Punjabi- Vamsa, Marathi- Adulsa, Telugu- Addasaramu, Tamil- Eidhabad, Bengali- Bakas, Gujarati- Araduso
Synonyms: Atarusa, Bhisagatma, Vasika, Vrsa, Simhasya, Simhi

Classcal Categorization :
Caraka: Tikta skandha
Susruta: –
Vagbhata: Durvadigana

General Discription:
Adhatoda is a well known herb which have been used extensively in Ayurvedic Medicine for over 2000 years,mainly for respiratory disorders. It is also used for bleeding disorders and febrile illness.

Rasa: Tikta, Kashaya
Guna: Ruksha, Laghu
Veerya: Shita
Vipaka: Kattu
Karma: Kapha-Pittahara, Hrdya, Svarya

A small evergreen, sub-herbacious bush which grows commonly in open plains, especially in the lower Himalayas (up to 1300 meters above sea level), India, Sri Lanka, Burma and Malaysia. This plant is also cultivated in other tropical areas. It grows well in low moisture areas and dry soils.

Botanical description:

Adhatoda vasica is a small, evergreen, dense shrub with elliptic or lanceolate, acuminate leaves.
Flowers- are white in colour with streaked purple lower lip., deeply five lobed, stamens gre glabrous.
Fruits- four seeded small capsules.
Seeds- are glabrous.
The flowers and fruits of Vasa appear during Februray- May.

Parts Used: Leaves, Roots, Flowers and Stem bark are used for medicinal purposes.

Major Chemical Constituents:
The chief principle present in Vasa is the quinazoline alkaloid, Vasicine. This herb also contains several other alkaloids such as vasicinine, b-sitosterol, kaempferol, vasicinolone, vasicol, peganine etc.

The alakalois vasicine has bronchodilatory and antihistaminic properties. The Uterotonic stimulant activity and moderate hypotensive activity of the alkaloids have also been reported. The leaves are a rich source of vitamin C and carotene and yield an essential oil.Vasicine also exhibited strong respiratory stimulant activity and cardiac-depressant effect.

Swasa (chronic bronchitis, asthma)
Kasa (cold, sore throat, cough, whooping cough)
Kshaya (tuberculosis)
Pyorrhoea and in bleeding gums(local application)

Therapeutic uses:
Vasa is a Expectorant (an agent that promotes the discharge of mucous and secretions from the respiratory passages)

Bronchodilator, Antiasthmatic

An Antispasmodic (an agent which relieves or eases muscular spasms, cramps or convulsions)

Antitussive (an agent that relieves coughing)

Oxytocic (an agent that stimulates contraction of the uterine muscle, facilitating or speeding up childbirth)

Uterotonic (an agent that tones, strengthens and invigorates the uterus or the entire organism giving a feeling of well-being)

It acts as a sedative, a bronchial antiseptic and is used in treating other lung and bronchiole disorders.Adhatoda vasica has also been used to speed delivery during childbirth.

The flowers of vasa are Kapha-pitta hara thus these are useful in treating various respiratory disorders. It is used to control bleeding conditions like menorrhagia (excessive menstrual bleeding), postpartum (after childbirth) hemorrhage and assists uterine involution.

The hypotensive activity of the alkaloids present in this herb are useful in lowering blood pressure and other pulmonary diseases. It also is useful in Dyspepsia, intermittent fever, typhus fever and also in local bleeding due to peptic ulcer and piles (hemorrhoids).

Large doses may cause
Irritation of the alimentary canal
Vomiting, in some people.

0.5-1.5g/day dried root
1-3mL/day fluid extract

Imporatant Preparations:

Vasavlehya : 6-12 g b.d.
Vasarishta : 15 ml t.i.d.
Vasasvarasa : 10-20 ml b.d.
Vasadigutika : 250-500 mg t.i.d.
Vasaghrita : 6-12 g b.d.
Vasakhanda : 6-12 g b.d


Eczema, a general term describing conditions affecting the skin, has many specific descriptions depending on appearance and location, frequency of occurance, and cause of occurance. Often, certain conditions will have two or more descriptions depending on what the Doctor thinks the cause is. For example: Xerotic, Asteatosis and Atopic refer to dry skin that usually affects older people making the skin drier and if not treated causes the skin to crack. Nummular Dermatitis or Discoid Eczema found on the arms or legs and consists of patches of reddish discolored skin. Other names are Contact Dermatitis or Allergic Contact Dermatitis occurring when the skin is exposed to allergens usually found in products people use like medications and deodorants and sometimes your own sweat. It usually shows up on the arms and hands. Venous or Stasis Dermatitis affects the lower limbs and the itching causes dark reddish skin. It is usually found on the lower extremities – legs and feet and frequently appears on people with reduced blood circulation. Lichen Simplex Chronicus or Neurodermatitis usually found on the groin, neck and ankles and is usually caused by severe rubbing. Jock itch is probably a form. Seborrhea or Seborrheic Dermatitis appears as scaling or pimpelling around the eyes or on the scalp. In babies it appears as a yellowish rash on the scalp and is curable. Other specific descriptions exist, but all are a form of Eczema. Some forms are curable. Others are not. Some are inherited and occur periodically. These cases can usually be controlled. None are considered contagious. Causes of Eczema can be allergens and irritants found in food, soaps, cleansers, solvents, cosmetics, plants, weeds, animals fibers, chemicals, toxins in the air, over washing, diuretic medications, nutrition deficiencies, radiation, malignancies, neurological disorders, wind, humidity, decreased sweating, dry air, under active thyroid, metals, and inherited factors. Some forms can be caused by and co-exist with other maladies. You name it, it seems, and one could acquire Eczema from it. Treatments for Eczema are many and may often consist of reduced bathing, using moisturizers, ointments, emollients, humectants, topical steroids, retinoid, ultra violet light, phototherapy, even coal tar (one of the early means of treatment). It is best to let your Doctor determine the best choice for treatment. Eczema affects people of all ages, even babies. Baby Eczema usually shows up in yellow splotches on the scalp; and reddish cheeks with what looks like pimples or blisters that may secret fluid. Older folks who may not secret as much oil as younger people, and often get dry skin which if not treated can crack, scale and become for rash like. It can be painful. Scratching an itchy area only aggravates the condition. If you or a loved one are experiencing itches that don’t go away, or red, pink or dark red areas that itch and don’t go away, try not to scratch or rub too vigorously and see your Doctor for proper treatment. Failure to treat can cause infections that lead to even more severe complications.

For detailed information and photo’s Google for the Eczema Guide.

Richard Prosser

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