Siddha medicine can help treat HIV/AIDS
Chennai: Tackling infections like the HIV/AIDS appears to be nothing new in Siddha system of medicine. Siddha practitioners who have caught the state government’s attention and succeeded in ensuring promotion of herbal preparations like Nilavembu Kudineer, Adathoda extract and papaya leaf juice to effectively combat viral infection like dengue, hope to see their traditional preparations enter into the protocol in treating the HIV/ AIDS soon.
Clinical trial has proved that Siddha medicines are potent enough to increase the CD 4 count among the HIV AIDS infected and they are economically viable, claims B. Thamizhkkani, Government Siddha Physician, Ariyalur, and secretary, Tamil Nadu Siddha Medical Officers’ Association (TANSMOA).
“About 4,448 diseases are classified and mentioned in Siddha literature. Amazingly even so many decades ago, HIV AIDS is classified under the disease of Mega Vettai or Vettai Pramegam. The signs and symptoms, causative factors and treatment were mentioned in detail. This term used only by Siddhars refers to a range of symptoms that occur in the genitals and the body and is initially related to ‘heat’ but later it affects Vatham, Pittham, Kabam and the seven body elements (Udal Thathukkal) in total,” he adds.
Basically, this lethal infection destroys the body’s defence mechanism leading to multiple organ failure. “TB virus may not affect all of us. But those having TB may be vulnerable to HIV AIDS. About 4,000 years ago Siddha had formulated Kayakalpam to enhance the body’s defence mechanism. And there are good Siddha preparations which could boost immunity besides improve anti-viral properties,” says Selvin Innocent Dhas, president, ISMGA (Indian Siddha Medical Graduates Association). These medicines guarantee a qualitatively better life and prolongs life expectancy of the affected by about 10 to 15years, he adds.
Endorsing their views, Padma, secretary, ISMGA has urged the state government to introduce the combination of Siddha and ART (anti retroviral therapy) drugs to treat the HIV AIDS patients.
“Siddha has proved that it can create anti-viral effect, decrease viral load and ensure the patient leads a normal life. The government should introduce an integrated approach to tackle this epidemic,” he urges.
“Promoting Siddha is basically like guiding people to eat the right food. We can think of approving this once the clinical trials are over. Nilavembu Kudineer, for instance, underwent 15 clinical trials and only thereafter it was promoted in a big way. Of course, nutritional food can help improve the CD4 count,” reasons R. G. Anand, Regional Coordinator, National AIDS Control Organisation for Tamil Nadu and Puducherry.