Causes and Symptoms: In cases of acute leukaemia, the patient shows pallor, occasional purpuric rash. Enlargement of the lymphatic glands and spleen are also prominent in some cases. The temperature rises and the condition is liable to be mistaken for general TB. In cases of chronic leukaemia, the onset is gradual, and the usual symptoms are either swelling of the abdomen or shortness of breath due to painless enlargement of the spleen. The enlargement of the glands in the neck and armpits can also be the symptoms. Symptoms of anaemia such as a pale pallor of the skin and palpitations are present. There may also be occasional haemorrhages from the nose, stomach, gums, or bowels. There is dropsy of the feet, diarrhoea, and also a slight degree of fever. The life expectancy of the patient is not more than a few years if the disease is not treated in time.
Ayurveda believes that leukaemia is caused by a vitiation of all the three doshas, namely, vata, pitta, and kapha, and seeks to cure it with drugs, which restore the balance of the three.
Symptoms: People with leukaemia may become bruised, or can bleed excessively. The patient can also develop pinprick bleeds. White blood cells, which are involved in fighting pathogens, may be suppressed or dysfunctional. This could cause the patient's immune system to be unable to fight off a simple infection or to start attacking other body cells. Finally, the red blood cell deficiency leads to anaemia, which may cause dyspnoea. All symptoms can be attributed to other diseases. For diagnosis, blood tests and a bone marrow examination are very much required.
Some other related symptoms that are prominent in leukaemia can be mentioned as follows:
Fever, chills, night sweats and other flu-like symptoms, Weakness and fatigue, Swollen or bleeding gums, Neurological symptoms i.e. headaches, Enlarged liver and spleen, Frequent infection, Bone pain, Joint pain, Dizziness, Nausea, Swollen tonsils, Diarrhoea, Paleness, Malaise, Weight loss.
Medicines and Prescriptions: For acute cases of leukaemia, the following prescription is recommended:
Bajra Bhasma i.e. calx of diamond; Muktapishtha; Pandupanchanan Rasa: 5.8 mg of Bajra Bhasma, 60 mg of Muktapishtha and 120 mg of Pandupanchanan Rasa to be taken thrice daily.
But in chronic cases of leukaemia, the following prescription is recommended
Bajra Bhasma: Yakritaplihodarariloha Rasa; Pandupanchanan Rasa: 5.8 mg of Bajra Bhasma, and 120 mg each of Yakritaplihodarariloha Rasa and Pandupanchanan Rasa to be taken thrice daily.
Other drugs recommended in leukaemia can be mentioned as Vishadi Churna, Dcnyardileha, Chandrasuryatmak Rasa, Trailokyasundar.
Periodic transfusions of blood may also be necessary in chronic cases of leukaemia.
Home Remedies: In addition to the above, a decoction of flesh liver juice and turmeric should be given. Fresh blood of goat and rabbit, taken in doses of 50 to 100 ml, is also helpful in acute cases.
Diet and Other Regimen: The patient suffering from leukaemia should be advised to eat old rice and oats, moong dal, vegetables like raw banana, gourds, spinach, raw papaya, radish, and onions. Amla, figs, oranges, apples and grapes can also be taken. Meats like fresh liver grilled over an open fire, and meat soups should be taken. Butter, buttermilk, and ghee are also useful.
Care should be taken that no injury is caused to any part of the body, as this may lead to excessive bleeding.
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