Autoimmune disorders have always been one in all the key health concerns among the general public and the biomedical fraternity. Autoimmune disorders are a group of disorders with a pathology mechanism related to an abnormally overactive immune system. The immune cells react against antigens which are an element of the body normally and hence destroying the healthy body tissues. MYASTHENIA GRAVIS is one such disease. What is myasthenia gravis? How can one identify its features? Can ayurveda help to manage such conditions? Let us learn the answer to all these questions through the following article.
The term Myasthenia gravis has latin and greek origin. The term grave refers to severe muscle weakness. The name implies that it is a very serious condition, however the intensity can vary from person to person. Myasthenia gravis, as mentioned above, is an autoimmune disease. It is a chronic neuromuscular disease. This condition results in reduced strength of the skeletal muscles. This further will result in weakness of the muscles. It is seen to worsen after activity and a person feels better after a period of rest. Myasthenia gravis targets the skeletal muscles which can include the muscles responsible for breathing, movement including the muscles of arms and legs. Let us discuss the causes of myasthenia gravis.
Causes of Myasthenia Gravis
The main cause of myasthenia gravis is the abnormally functioning immune cells. Myasthenia gravis is a result of disturbance in the transmission of nerve impulses to muscles. The antibodies either destroy or block the electrical signals. This prevents the muscle from contracting. The other probable cause is the thymus gland. The abnormal functioning of the thymus gland leads to the disturbance in immune function as it is also responsible for the normal functioning of the immune system. This will lead to presentation of various symptoms which will be discussed as follows.
Symptoms of Myasthenia Gravis
The main feature of myasthenia gravis is muscle weakness which is observed to worsen after periods of physical activity and improves after a period of rest. The muscles affected can be the ones controlling eye movement, facial expression, talking, swallowing, etc. The degree of weakness of muscles in Myasthenia gravis varies widely from patient to patient. The most common symptoms presented by patients of Myasthenia gravis are as follows –
- Ocular myasthenia includes weakness of eye muscles
- Ptosis – drooping of eyelids either one or both
- Diplopia – Blurry vision or double vision
- Dyspnoea – difficulty in breathing
- Dysarthria – impaired speech
- Weakness in neck, legs, arms, hands and fingers
The above said symptoms are the most common features observed in the majority of the cases. Let us now know about the diagnosis of this condition.
Diagnosis of Myasthenia Gravis
The diagnosis of myasthenia gravis will require the detailed personal history of the patient along with the neurological examination. Edrophonium test, blood test, electrodiagnostic tests may also be required. Imaging tests such as CT computed tomography or MRI (magnetic resonance imaging) may also be done to further evaluate the condition in detail. After the diagnosis is confirmed, the patient is subjected to various medicinal therapies and procedures which will be described as follows.
Treatment of Myasthenia Gravis
The line of treatment of myasthenia gravis will include therapies to help manage and improve the muscle weakness in the patients. The administration of various medicinal drugs will include monoclonal antibodies, immunosuppressive drugs, plasmapheresis and intravenous immunoglobulins. The treatment modalities are employed according to the patient’s condition. There may be some cases in which the patients do not respond to the medications. So, are these the only options for treatment? Can ayurveda help to cope in this situation? Let us know the ayurvedic perspective of the Myasthenia gravis through the following content.
Ayurvedic Aspect of Myasthenia Gravis
Ayurveda is a holistic science with rich literature regarding the health topics. It contains detailed description about various diseased conditions along with its treatment modalities. The principles of ayurveda considers the equilibrium between the three dosha (vata, pitta, kapha) to be the pillars of a healthy body. The vata dosha is said to be responsible for the movements in the body and also for the normal functioning of the nervous system. The normal functioning of vata dosha will help in the normal neurological functions while disturbance in the vata levels will hinder various related functions.
Myasthenia gravis is a type of neurological condition. It can be correlated to vata imbalance in the body. When the levels of vata are increased in the body, it causes pain in different parts of the body. The imbalance of vata levels will lead to imbalance in levels of kapha and pitta. This will lead to presentation of pain and stiffness in various parts of the body. Another perspective can be, as mentioned earlier, the Myasthenia gravis is an auto immune disorder. According to the Ayurvedic point of view the auto immune disorders are metabolic disorders and are a result of accumulation of disease causing toxins or endotoxins. It is possible to reverse autoimmune disorders with Ayurvedic herbs by improving the digestive-metabolic activities at various levels & by making system intelligent, similar process is involved during a type of disease associated with aama , manifestation which is that the result of vitiation of vata & kapha which have a variety of antagonistic properties.
Therefore, the treatment regimen will include stabilizing the levels of vata dosha in the body along with the eradication of ama dosha (endotoxins). Various drugs that are useful in balancing the vata dosha are nirgundi (Vitex negundo), ashwagandha (Withania somnifera), sonth (Zinziber officinale) etc.The ayurvedic products prepared by planet ayurveda useful in managing the condition of Myasthenia gravis will be described as follows.
Herbal Remedies for Myasthenia Gravis by Planet Ayurveda
Planet Ayurveda prepares medicinal formulations that contain natural herbs beneficial for the health of the body. Planet Ayurveda is providing various preparations of natural herbs which are prepared using authentic ways and provide great results in improving the condition of Myasthenia gravis. All the herbal products manufactured here are free from chemicals, preservatives, starch, additives, colours and fillers. These products are hundred percent natural and are formulated by MD Ayurvedic doctors with deep knowledge of Ayurveda and many years of experience. The formulations are prepared strictly according to the procedures described in the samhitas (classical texts) and therefore are very effective in promoting the health of the patient and managing the diseased state effectively. The products beneficial for improving the condition of Myasthenia gravis is described as follows –
- Ashwagandha Capsule
- Brahmi capsule
- Yograj Guggul
- Atirasadi Churna
1. Ashwagandha Capsule
Ashwagandha capsules prepared by planet ayurveda contain natural extracts of a very effective vata pacifying herb Ashwagandha (Withania somnifera). Ashwagandha is very helpful in balancing the vata dosha and hence, also useful in improving the neurological condition of the body. Balancing the vata dosha will help to improve the condition of myasthenia gravis. It will also help in improving the strength of the muscles and thus giving relief to the patient.
Dose – 2 capsules two times a day, after meals.
2. Brahmi capsules
Planet ayurveda is preparing Brahmi capsules using the pure herbal extracts of the wonderful ayurvedic herb Brahmi (Bacopa monnieri). It helps to balance the vitiated vata, pitta and rakta dosha from the body. It helps to manage various difficulties such as pain,muscle weakness, etc. Brahmi is cool in potency and possess medhya properties i.e. improves the neurological state of the body. It helps to pacify the vata and pitta dosha in the body. It improves the electrical conduction of the neurons and thus benefiting the condition of myasthenia gravis.
Dosage -: 1 capsule two times a day with plain water after a meal.
3. Yograj Guggul
Yograj Guggul is a classical formulation mentioned in traditional Ayurveda texts consisting of Guggul resin (Commiphora mukul), Chitraka (Plumbago zeylanica), pippali (Piper longum) etc. This combination of herbs is very helpful in painful joints and muscles. This articulation helps to maintain the skeletal and neuromuscular system as well as removes toxins from the system. It helps to slow down the degenerative processes and boosts up the rejuvenating processes. Thus, benefitting the patient of myasthenia gravis.
Dosage – 2 tablets two times a day with warm water, after meals.
4. Atirasadi Churna
Atirasadi churna is prepare by planet ayurveda and contains beneficial ayurvedic herbs such as musli (Asparagus adscendens), ashwagandha (Withania somnifera), shatavari (Asparagus racemosus), etc. This combination of herbs help to increase the overall strength of the body. It will help to balance the vata dosha very effectively. Hence, helps to improve the condition of myasthenia gravis.
Dose – Atirasadi churna can be given 1 teaspoon two times a day with warm milk, after meals.
In a nutshell, it can be concluded that myasthenia gravis can be managed very effectively by Ayurveda.The Ayurvedic principles consider that vata is the causative factor behind all the type of diseases. And as discussed above, the increased levels of vata will result in imbalance of pitta and kapha levels also. So, the target of treatment of Myasthenia gravis will be to reduce the levels of vata dosha. Managing the proper levels of vata will lead to the healthy state of body. So, as the Ayurvedic treatment emphasizes on treating the root cause of the condition it is capable of eliminating the diseases permanently. Therefore, it can be said that with appropriate and timely management of vata levels of the body, the quality of life of the patient can be improved effectively.