Prasuri Tantra, an integrated part of Kournara-bhrirya which is one of the Ashtangas, describes everything about pregnancy and child birth. Brihat-trayi, Laghu-trayi and Kashyapa Samhita described every aspect of pregnancy & child birth like antenatal care, natal knowledge with techniques with postnatal care and perinatal care.
Observing Rajasvala-niyama, net being exposed to Garbhopaghatakara bhavas, Pumsavana described in Samhitas may provide sufficient ground in preventing pathological conditions of pregnancy. Role of Garbha-sambhava-samagri and Shad-bhavas in pregnancy is complete in its concepts and preconceptional upgrading of these elements leads to Shreyasi-praja - is a precious contribution of Ayurveda.
Even though brief, the knowledge of Beeja (Spermatozoon & Ovum), Kshetra (The endometrial bed of un-vitiated uterus), Ritu (The fertile period), Aparya parha (Genital tract) as described in Samhitas is precise and the preparation of these elemen rs for better progeny is commendable. The role of Sattva (the psyche) in making of psychological attitudes and potentialities of fetus described in Ayurvedic texts is in completion with the present knowledge of child psychology. The version of Sarrnya has opened long back the avenue of immunological concepts related with pregnancy e.g. Acceptance of zygote by endometrium etc. Garbhini paricharya (ante-natal care of pregnant woman), Garbhini sadvritta (code of conduct of pregnant woman), Garbhini lakshana, Garbhini pariksha etc. are described on the grounds of available contemporary knowledge.
Born on 19.07.1963 in Vijayawada, A.P., the author has completed the graduation from Anantha Lakshmi Government Ayurveda Medical College, Warangal in the year 1985. She worked as faculty member in the Government-aided Mohta Ayurvedic College in Rajasthan and later on finished her post graduation from Government Ayurveda College, Hyderabad in 1993. She is meritorious throughout her carrier. She served as Assistant Professor, Professor & P.G. Professor in N.K.]. Ayurveda Medical College, Bidar from 1993 to 2002 and has joined the S.D.M. College of Ayurveda, Udupi and P.G. Professor since then.
She is scholarly teacher, research worker, clinician and compassionate social worker and is also the author of the books ‘Neurological Concepts in Ayurveda’, ‘PreConceptional Care in Ayurveda’ and ‘A Text Book of Gynaecology (Streeroga- Vijnan)’. She is the editor of annual bulletin themed on surgical aspects of Ayurveda ‘Soushruti’ and one of the organizing secretaries of’Soushruti-97’ an international seminar and many CME programmes. She is associated with different universities and national institutes in Ayurveda as examiner, P.G. examiner, Ph.D. guide and presented papers and chaired many national and international conferences and published many research papers.
The classical Ashtanga Ayurveda though does not include the subject of ‘Prasuti Tantra’ as an independent clinical specialty, the ‘Kaumara Bhritya’ specialty in essence covers the concepts and the details of obstetrics, gynecology and pediatrics. The subject matter of Prasuti . Tantra and Stree-roga (obstetrics and gynecology) is found scattered in classical literature in various texts like Charaka Samhita, Sushruta Samhita Kashyapa Samhita, Harita Samhita and Vagbhata. It is seen in recent decades that newer specialties in Ayurveda have come up to meet the needs of the current education and clinical practice and Prasuti Tantra is one important specialty being developed on these lines. The concept of ‘Shreyasi praja’ i.e. well formed fetus with good physical, psychological, intellectual and spiritual endowments is a ma- ‘or contribution of Ayurvedic literature to the science. Bhava Mishra very comprehensively described the product of embryo as which means that the embryo is formed from the combination of Pancha mahabhuta, Sattva, Rajas, Tamas, Indriya and Bhutatma. Such highly evolved scientific thoughts, which go beyond the scope of present day modern science offer a challenge for research and its applicability.
The book Prasuti Tantra is written as per the needs of CCIM curriculum and the author has presented the subject matter in eleven sections. It is commendable that an elaborate and extensive reference material from different classical texts and commentaries is quite aptly presented systematically under each chapter. It is also noteworthy that relevant modern medical literature is presented in the book which makes it more useful for the reader.
I hope that the text book will be very useful for under graduate and post graduate students, academicians, practitioners and researchers. I congratulate Dr. V.N.K. Usha for authoring a detailed text book on Prasuti Tantra and hope that few more books on the subject including recent research in the field may also come from the experienced academician.
Reproduction is one of the basic requirements of any species to continue its existence on the universe. In comparison to lower species of mammals human reproduction is still complex, phase wise and pro- longed intricate procedure, starting from ovulation in females and spermatogenesis in males and concluding with the expulsion of fetus and placenta. Female human physiology invests a lot of energy, discipline and momentum and spends its physical, psychological and emotional energy depots.
Any simple deviation in this intricate, finely calculated series of events can lead to drastic pathological conditions, ego A little bit of drop of morula in its travel, in to the lower segment can lead to placenta previa or a little delay in cell division can lead to monosomy.
Ayurveda, the extract of all the Vedas dreams about "Shreyasi praja" (a well formed fetus with physical, psychological, intellectual and spiritual endowment who can serve the self and the society). It dreams about Kala-prasava (Full term delivery), Sukha-prasava (easy delivery) Yoni-gadheekarana, Kukshi-hrasa and Puarnaveekarana of sutika (post partum trimming of vagina, abdomen and rejuvenation of delivered woman).
Ayurveda advises about specific vihara during pregnancy apart from food recommendations (Masanumasika Garbhini Paricharya). It restricts few physical, psychological and social activities (Garbha- upaghatakarbhavas). It mentions simple remedies for minor ailments like Grabhini-vamana and discusses in vast about major ailments. As it describes about Prasava (normal delivery), it also gives elaborate notes on Mudhagarbha and its varieties and elaborates medical and mechanical treatments apart from maneuvers and surgery. It is not an exaggerated statement that the maneuvers described in Mudhagarbha chikitsa and Apara sanga are still in practical use with no or slight modifications in procedure but with major modifications in nomenclature.
It is not that Ayurveda converses only about experienced visible practical problems, its intuition about physiological and bio-chemical considerations at cell level is also commendable. Concept of Satmya stands well in contemporary advanced research as acceptance of zygote by maternal immune system. Role of Sattva (The Psyche) as Garbhakara-bhavas specifies about importance of non-stressful psychological condition during pregnancy which is a burning problem in present generation young, educated, working mothers.
This much knowledge hidden in Samhitas should be periodically analyzed in the form of books by various authors in the vision of their own practical experience and learnt contemporary information. Projecting the interior soul of Samhitas is book writing; and if written according to syllabus is text book writing.
I feel happy to share my little understanding about Prasuti Tantra, a part of Samhitas in the form of text book written according to modified CCIM syllabus.
Although this book has been written according to U.G. CCIM syllabus, it may also prove to be useful for P.G students.
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