Multi-drug resistant tuberculosis (MDR-TB) is defined as tuberculosis infection that is resistant to Isoniazid and Rifampicin, the two most powerful first-line anti-TB drugs. MDR-TB usually results from missed doses, inappropriate therapy or incomplete TB treatment. Such patients need to be treated with at least five anti-TB drugs for at least 18-24 months. This second-line treatment is much costlier and has more side-effects. Extremely drug-resistant tuberculosis (XDR-TB) is defined as tuberculosis infection that is resistant to the two main first-line anti-TB drugs and also to a few second-line drugs. This condition also arises due to inappropriate management of tuberculosis, and is treated on the same lines as MDR-TB.
Since the treatment of MDR and XDR – TB is very costly and toxic, the treatment options for such patients narrow down drastically and increase the mortality rate. This is especially true for patients residing in poor and developing countries. Ayurvedic medicines can be used as an additional therapy both to improve the therapeutic effect as well as to reduce the potential toxicity of modern medicines. In addition, Ayurvedic medicines can also boost the immune status in such patients so that the body is in a better position to fight and control the infection.
Medicines like Tulsi (Ocimum sanctum), Guggulu (Commiphora mukul), Haridra (Curcuma longa), Daru-Haridra (Berberis aristata), Amalaki (Emblica officinalis), Pippali (Piper longum), Kantakari (Solanum xanthocarpum), Bruhat-Kantakari (Solanum indicum), Pushkarmool (Inula racemosa), Kushtha (Saussurea lappa), Yashtimadhuk (Glycerrhiza glabra), Arjun (Terminalia arjuna), Abhrak-Bhasma, Shrung-Bhasma, Ras-Sindur, Malla-Sindur, Sameer-Pannag-Ras, Laghu-Malini-Vasant, Madhu-Malini-Vasant, Suvarna-Malini-Vasant and Heerak-Bhasma can be used to treat and control the tuberculosis infection.
Medicines like Arogya-Vardhini, Sutshekhar-Ras, Suvarna-Sutshekhar-Ras, Vishwa (Zinziber officinalis), Laghu-Sutshekhar-Ras, Praval-Panchamrut-Ras, Punarnavadi-Qadha, Shankh-Vati, Kutki (Picrorrhiza kurroa), Kalmegh (Andrographis paniculata), Punarnava (Boerhaavia diffusa), Deodar (Cedrus deodara), Amalaki, Chirayta (Swertia chirata), Sharpunkha (Tephrosea purpura) and Tamra-Bhasma can be used to reduce or prevent drug toxicity arising from the use of modern medicines. These Ayurvedic medicines prevent or reduce drug induced organ damage to the liver, kidneys, eyes,ears and the nervous system.
Medicines like Suvarna-Malini-Vasant, Suvarna-Parpati, Heerak-Bhasma, Siddha-Makar-Dhwaj-Ras, Shwas-Kas-Chintamani-Ras, Ashwagandha (Withania somnifera), Shatavari (Asperagus racemosus), Bala (Sida cordifolia), Nag-Bala (Grewia hirsuta), Pippali, Yashtimadhuk and Tulsi can be used to improve the immune system of the body in affected individuals.
A judicious combination of Ayurvedic medicines can thus successfully treat patients affected with MDR and XDR- TB and considerably reduce the morbidity and mortality associated with these conditions.