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Physio - Anatomical Consideration of Pranavaha Srotas

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Physio - Anatomical Consideration of Pranavaha Srotas

  1. 1. Physio - Anatomical Consideration of Pranavaha Srotas Dr. Vandana Verma Assistant Professor Department of Kriya Sharir, Faculty of Ayurveda, IMS, BHU, Varanasi, India
  2. 2. Introduction  Body is composed of numerous Srotas, which have a significant role in the maintenance of the equilibrium of body elements i.e. Dosha, Dhatu, Mala.  Acharya Charaka has described thirteen major gross srotamsi simulating the major physiological systems of the body as known in conventional modern system of medicine . Prana vaha srotas, udaka vaha srotas, anna vaha srotas, rasa vaha srotas, rakta vaha srotas, masa vaha srotas, meda vaha srotas, asthi vaha srotas, majja vaha srotas, sukra vaha srotas, mutra vaha srotas, purish vaha srotas, sweda vaha srotas
  3. 3.  Pranavaha Srotas means a channel or path through which external air enters into body to sustain life. In this paper my attempt is to discuss and understand the anatomical and physiological aspect of pranavaha srotas in view of modern respiratory system physiology.
  4. 4. Some important queries-  What is pranavaha srotas?  What is Prana in context to thirteen sthoola srotas?  Pranavaha srotas should be considered as respiratory system or nervous system ?
  5. 5.  Prana- various meaning of word prana - Air inhaled, wind - The breath of life - Breath, respiration - Vitality - Spirit - Organs of vitality or sensation viz. prana, vac, cakshus, srota, manas collectively. - As a sign of vigor, energy, power. ( Monier William’s Sanskrita-English dictionary pg. no. 705)
  6. 6. Prana:  In Ayurveda word Prana has been used to denote various meanings in different context like – Food (anna) - izk.kk% izk.kHk`RkkeUua yksdksfHk/kkofr A ( C.Su. 27/349) izk.kksº;H;Urjks u`.kka okº;izk.kxq.kkfUor% A /kkj;R;fojks/ksu “kjhja ik¥~pHkksSfrde~ AA ( S.Su. 17/18) Prana pavan - air/wind/oxygen ukfHkLFk% izk.kiou% ----------A “kjhjizk.k;ksjso la;ksxknk;q:Pp;rs A ( Sha.pu. 5/48- 50) Vata dosha – Prana of living being. – lokZ fgps’Vk okrsu izk.kk%izkf.kuka Le`r% A (C.Su. 17/118) Prana vayu /vata - a kind of vata among five type of vata dosha.
  7. 7. Prana:  Organs of sensations and its pathways - f”kjfl bfUnz;kf.k bfUnz;izk.kogkfu plzksrkafl lw;Zfeo xHkLr;% lafJrkfu A ( C.Siddhi. 9/4)  Life, vitality – izk.kk%izk.kHk`Rkka ;rzfJrk% losZfUnz;kf.k p ;nqRrek³~xkuka f”kjLrnfHk/kh;rs AA ( C.Su. 17/12) eeZkf.kuke ekalfljkLuk;qvfLFklfU/k lfUuikrk% rs’kq LoHkkor ,oa fo”ks’ks.k izk.kfLr’BfUr A ( Su.Su. 6/16) n”ksSok;rukU;kgq% izk.kk;s’kqizfrf’Brk% A “kaM~[kkS eeZ=;ad.BksjDr”kqØkStlh xqne~ AA ( Su.Su. 29)  Dwadash prana- - vfXu% lkseks ok;q% lRoa jtLre% iapsfUnz;kf.kHkwrkResfr izk.kk%AA ( Su.Sha. 4/2)  Among thirteen sthula srotas – Prana,Udaka, Anna-----------I  In Yoga – it is original life force, the cosmic energy coming from sun and connecting the elements of universe.
  8. 8. Pranavaha Srotas-  On observation of name given to Srotas it seems that Acharyas has given the particular name to srotas on the basis of substances which they carry (like prana, udaka, anna, rasa, etc) not only on the basis of functions or organs which is the criteria of modern physiology like respiration, digestion, musculo-skeletal system.  Chakrapani has further explained the purpose of description of thirteen gross material channels is to understand the normal physiological functional state of living body.
  9. 9. Pranavaha Srotas-  The normal physiological function depends basically on three type of substances- 1. first category- intake of some nutrient substances (prana vayu, udaka, anna), 2. second category - substances which are retained in body form sthayi(permanent) seven dhatu and fraction of it i.e. poshakansh nourishes permanent tissue through sapta dhatu vaha srotas. 3. third category- some waste substances( mutra, purish, sveda ) formed in body are expelled out of the body.  So in relation to sthula srotas the word prana stands for air.
  10. 10. Pranavaha Srotas as Respiratory System  The word Pranavaha srotas means a channel or path through which the external air (prana vayu) enters into the body to sustain life.  On the basis of the above description pranavaha srotas may be consider the as respiratory system, since it carries prana vayu (air), its main functional contribution is to provide oxygen to the body.  The Prana vayu (fresh air/oxygen) is taken in during the act of respiration via ventilatory mechanism which is regulated by mainly two types of Vata dosha i.e. Prana vata and Udana vata.
  11. 11. Moolasthan of Pranavaha Srotas- Acharaya Charak - Hridaya (heart) and Mahasrotas (alimentary canal) Sushruta - Hridaya (heart) and Rasavahi dhamani (blood vessels) . ewya bfr izHkoLFkkua A ( Chakarpani)  Chakrapani has desribed Mulam as-“Mulamiti Prabhava Sthanam”,meaning thereby that Mula of a srotas is- the anatomical seat of the respective srotas the main site of the pathology of that channel the principal site of manifestation of disease.  The set of channels is apparently described as the major seat of disease manifestation which can be clinically examined in a patient by physician for diagnostic purposes. rs’kka rq [kyq lzksrlka ;FkkLFkwya dfrfpRizdkjkUewyr”p izdksifoKkur”pkuqO;k[;kL;ke%A ( C.Vi. 5/6)
  12. 12. Pranavaha srorodusti Pranavaha srorodusti produces various symptoms like – atisristam (increased rate of breathing), atibaddham (difficulty in breathing), kupitam, alpam or abhiksanam (breathing pattern is short with increased frequency), sa sahaba shula (breathing associated with sound and pain) etc, The above symptoms show a quite similarity with various respiratory diseases like as Swasa ,Kasa etc. In pathogenesis of shvasa, ,hikka pranavaha srotas get involved(C.Chi.17/17).
  13. 13.  laxzgs nqf’V y{k.ka lkekU;a okrk|fo’ksf”kra nqf’Vy{k.kafeR;Fka% A (Chakrapani on C.Vi. 5/30)  Only symptoms in general of vitiation of various srotas are described . Specific symptoms due to vitiation of srotas by various type of dosha are not described.  But on careful observation one can find that these symptoms of Pranavahsrotodushti are related only to rate and rhythm of respiration or difficult breathing (dyspnoea). These respiratory symptoms could be because of disturbance in respiratory system organs, cardiovascular organs or nutritional deficiency due to alimentary canal organs, involvement of nervous system. This could be the reason of considering hridaya (heart, brain) and Mahasrotas (alimentary canal), blood vessels as mool of Pranavaha srotas.
  14. 14. Pranavaha Srotas as Nervous System  izk.kkogkukfefr izk.klaKdokrogkukaaA ,rPp izk.kk[;fof”k’BL; ok;ksfoZf”k’Vlzksr%A lkekU;so rqok;ks% lokZ ,o/keU; bfr u fojks/k% A Chakrapani on C.Vi.5/7) According to Chakrapani Pranavaha Srotas stands for that Srotas which transports a specific type of vata called Pranavata .  f”kjfl bfUnz;kf.k bfUnz;izk.kogkfup lzksrkafl lw;Zfeo xHkLr;% lafJrkfu A ( C.Siddhi. 9/4) All sensory and motor organs along with their pranavaha srotamsi ( afferent and efferent pathways)are basically connected to the head (brain ) in a fashion similar to connections between sunrays and the Sun.
  15. 15. Pranavaha Srotas as Nervous System  lokZfg ps’Vk okrsuizk.kk%izkf.kukaLe`r% A (C.Su. 17/118) Charak has mentioned that all the activities either physical or mental are due to Vata and that is why it is called as Prana of all living being.  Prana vata is situated in the head and other active sites are chest and throat. It controls and regulates the intellectual functions, mental process and activities like spitting, sneezing, belching, respiration and deglutition. All these activities are governed by Nervous system.
  16. 16. Conclusion:  On the basis of these descriptions some authors consider pranavaha srotas as nervous system but Acharya Charak has not described separate gross channel for dosha. He said that dosha move through all the channel of the body both sentient and insentient parts. While factors beyond sensory perception i.e. manas move only in sentient portion of the body.  Functional regulation of all the channel depends on vata, pitta, kapha not only pranavaha srotas (respiratory system). 
  17. 17. Conclusion  The pranavaha srotas should be considered as respiratory system in context to sthula srotas but it must be studied in relation to nervous system, cardiovascular, alimentary canal (GIT) since all the systems are functionally interlinked and dependent on each other for their proper function.  Since all the systems are functionally interrelated like nervous system is related with Regulation of respiration, cardiovascular system with Transportation of prana i.e. O2, alimentary canal provides nutrients required for synthesis of haemoglobin which is main carrier of O2 .

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