Virechana is medicated purgation therapy, it is the cleansing of the Pitta and the purification of the blood toxins from the body that are accumulated in the liver and gallbladder; it completely cleanses the gastro-intestinal tract. It is a safe procedure without side effects. Generally, it is administered three days after the Vamana treatment but this may vary. If Vamana therapy is not needed, Virechana can be administered directly after purvakarma. Virechan cleanses the sweat glands, small intestine, colon, kidneys, stomach, liver and spleen. A number of effective and safe herbs can be used as a laxative. This includes senna, prune, bran, flaxseed husk, dandelion root, psyllium seed, cow’s milk, salt, castor oil, raisins and mango juice. When taking these laxatives, it is important to adhere to restricted diet. Benefits of Virechana help root out skin diseases, chronic fever, piles, abdominal tumors, worms, gout, jaundice, gastrointestinal problems, constipation, irritable bowel syndrome, diabetes, asthma, headaches, elephantiasis and gynecological disorders. This karma mainly aims to eliminate doshas that cannot be removed by Vamana karma such as the kidneys, lungs and sweat glands. This elimination process of vitiated doshas through rectum is called Virechana. The drugs used for virechana karma (purgation therapy) vitiate the doshas and bring them into the koshta (abdomen). Purgative drugs are dominant in earth and water elements and have downward movement. The synonyms of virechana are rechan and praskandhan.
Medicines prepared from purgative plants, such as common milk hedge (Snuhi), or purging croton (Jaiphal) are used for this purpose. Before Virechan is administered, there are three procedures which are employed, namely Paachan (Digestion), Snehan (Oleation therapy) and Swedan (diaphoresis).
Virechan Substances :
Senna, prune, bran, flaxseed husk, dandelion root, psyllium seed, cow’s milk, salt, castor oil, raisins, mango juice, triphala.
Purgation is employed to people suffering from chronic skin disorders, diabetes, fistula, hemorrhoids, ascites, anemia, migraine, asthma, cough, jaundice, edema, gout and liver diseases.
Following are the diseases for which Virechana karma treatment can be given
Retention of urine
Persons having anal fissure, anorectal bleeding, anorexia, indigestion, fever; persons suffering from alcoholism; weak persons; pregnant women and persons above the age of 65 years or below age of 15 years should not be given induced purgation.
After the oleation therapy and diaphoresis is properly administered, a light diet at night, and next morning is advised, the purgative medicine, i.e., powder of Indian Jalap is given in the dose of 1-3 gm., along with honey.
After which purgation or the elimination of toxins through stools begins. The frequency, quantity, and physical examination of stools, i.e., color and consistency is observed. Blood pressure, pulse, respiration chart is maintained to keep a check on dehydration.
Signs and Symptoms
Ideally, fecal matter excretion is followed by Pitta Dosha, Kapha Dosha and Vata Dosha respectively. Lightness of the body and an increase in appetite is noticed. The intestinal spasms to expel the fecal matter subside naturally, after the complete elimination of the accumulated toxins.
Complications of Improper Purgation
Incomplete purgation could cause the intestinal spasms to subside prematurely. A feeling heaviness or fullness of stomach, vomiting and blockage of passage of flatus is likely. Excessive purgation causes giddiness, dehydration, weakness, restlessness and muscular cramps.
Post Purgation procedures
Diet should be on the lines of Sansarjan Krama.