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Journal of Drug Delivery and Therapeutics

Open Access to Pharmaceutical and Medical Research

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Open Access  Full Text Article                                                                                                                                           Review Article

Review on Classical Preparatory Methods of Rasa Dravyaas

Dr. Vandana N. Hirudkar1*, Dr. Sarita G. Gharde2

1 Professor, Rasashastra & Bhaishajya Kalpana, L.N. Ayurved College & Hospital, Bhopal (MP) India

2 Associate Professor, Shalakyatantra, L.N. Ayurved College & Hospital, Bhopal (MP) India

Article Info:

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Article History:

Received 20 July 2021     

Reviewed 24 August 2021

Accepted 29 August 2021 

Published 15 Sep 2021 

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Cite this article as:

Hirudkar VN, Gharde SG, Review on Classical Preparatory Methods of Rasa Dravyaas, Journal of Drug Delivery and Therapeutics. 2021; 11(5):196-198

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.22270/jddt.v11i5.4994    

Abstract

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The Ayurveda term Rasashaastra merely involves science of mercury (Parada). This specialized modality works around mineral, metal and precious elements. The drugs or raw materials utilized under category of Rasashaastra are known as ‘Rasa dravyaas’. These drugs offer several therapeutic responses and imparts excellent pattern of drug absorption, assimilation and quick action. Rasa dravyaas are utilized for treating diseases of skin, digestive system, respiratory system, reproductive system and excretory system, etc. The metal and mineral based products are prepared using specific procedures of purification, mixing, heating, incineration and size reduction, etc. The procedures involves in the preparation of these drugs provides particular characteristics in formulation therefore it is very essential to prepare Rasa dravyaas as per the specified protocol with great precaution, the error in preparation of Rasa dravyaas can hamper quality of drugs and also responsible for adverse reaction. Thus ancient Ayurveda philospher advocated that a learned person should involve in the preparation of Rasa dravyaas with quality check in each step. Present article explores classical preparatory methods of Rasa Dravyaas.

Keywords: Ayurveda, Rasashaastra, Rasa dravyaas, Parada

*Address for Correspondence: 

Dr. Vandana N. Hirudkar, Professor, Rasashastra & Bhaishajya Kalpana, L.N. Ayurved College & Hospital, Bhopal (MP) India               

 


Introduction

Rasashastra is science of processing and therapeutic utilization of mineral and metal based formulation. The processing of mercury for therapeutic purpose mainly initiated the science of alchemy. The science of Rasashastra extensively uses Parada and poisons substances along with other metals & minerals 1-4. The metallic and mineral substances used in Ayurveda especially in Rasashastra generally categorized into four classes as depicted in Figure 1.

Figure 1: Categories of metallic and mineral substances used in Ayurveda Rasashastra

As per above classification these substances posses specific characteristics features; the compound comes under category of ‘Rasa’ possessing adaptogenic (Rasaayana) effect. Dhatus are group of compounds possessing capacity to strengthen body physically as well as mentally. Ratna are minerals possessing gem quality and considered as precious elements. The poisonous substances categorized as Visha used in special cases.

These drugs possess Laghu Guna, long shelf life, high potency & low dose. These classical preparations are somewhat complicated to prepare and need precautions while using but offers significant therapeutic responses.

General processing of metal and mineral

The minerals and metal are not compatible for human consumption therefore processing is required to convert these non-compatible substances into compatible form. Mineral & metallic materials treated with plant or animal substances and purified by various procedure so to make them compatible with the human body. The procedures involve in processing of these substances facilitates their easy assimilation and reduces toxicity of such substances. The processing convert hard material into soft form that is edible and free from toxicity 3-7.

 

 

Processing of Mercury (Parada):

The Mercury (Parada) purified by various means to convert into Suddha Parada, that after it is transformed into stable compound which is non-toxic and therapeutically effective and this form termed as Baddha or Murcchita Parada. Sulphur mainly used to prepare most of the mercurial formulation and depending upon method of preparation these mercurial (Rasa) Dravyaas can be categorized as follows:

Ø Khalvi Rasa

Ø Parpati Rasa

Ø Kupipakwa Rasa

Ø Pottali Rasa

Preparation of Khalvi Rasa:

Mercury, sulphur and other ingredients grinds together in a mortar to get powdered mixture. The mortar used for grinding or triturating purpose is termed as Khalva therefore formulation of mercury prepared by this method described as Khalvi Rasa. Kajjali, Tribhuvankirti rasa and Aarogyavardhinivati, etc. are examples of this category.

Preparation of Parpati Rasa:

The homogeneous black coloured fine powder of mercury and sulphur termed as Kajjali. This powdered mass further subjected to control heating to get molten mass, this mass further spread on a flat soft surface evenly; preferably banana leaf placed on a soft platform of cow dung or mud. The mass spread over leaf covered with another leaf and pressed gently, that after covered leaf is removed from flat sheet of material which is termed as Parpati. The fresh cow dung or mud is used in this method to provide smooth platform for the leaf placed on it which uniform spreading of liquefied Kajjali on surface of banana leaf. Dootapapeshwar Rasa Parpati is an example of Parpati Rasa 6-9.  

Preparation of Kupipakva Rasa

Mercury grinded with sulphur along with other ingredients to prepare Kajjali, this Kajjali further subjected for controlled heating in a narrow mouth long neck glass flask and final formulation obtained then termed as Kupipakwa Rasa. There are different types of Kupipakwa Rasa i.e.; Antardhoom & Bahirdhoom, Sagandha & Nirgandha.

Initially mercury with Sulphur and other ingredients subjected for Shodhana procedure. Purified mercury then processed in Khalva Yantra. Purified sulphur and other ingredients with mercury mixed thoroughly to get homogeneous black coloured powder termed as Kajjali. This Kajjali then subjected for controlled heating in glass flask (Kupi). The heating of Kajjali in Kupi (narrow mouth long neck glass flask) performed on sand bath which in Ayurveda termed as Vaalukaa Yantra. In this step glass bottle is fully wrapped with layers of clay smeared pieces of cloth. The Kajjali filled in glass in a manner leaving 2/3rd of the flask empty. The Kupi filled with Kajjali placed on sand in the container for controlled heating. The mouth of glass bottle (Kupi) covered during filling of sand around it so to prevent entry of sand particles into Kupi. Specially designed heating device of bricks and mud called Culhaa is mainly used for controlled heating of Vaalukaa Yantra used to prepare Kupipakva Rasa. Heating continued for hours with low flame around 100 to 200°C. Finally opening of ‘Kupi’ is performed by breaking it into two halves. The product of the process is called Kupipakva Rasaayana which obtained in the upper and lower half of the Kupi. The drug or formulation obtained from upper half (neck of the bottle) is termed as Kanthastha Rasaayana, while the formulation obtained from lower half (bottom of bottle) is termed as Talastha Rasayana and formulation obtained from the both halves of the broken bottle is termed as Ubhayastha Rasaayana. The drug finally collected by scrapping sides of Kupi and further subjected for dry grinding in a mortar to get fine powder which then stored in an airtight container. Rasa Sindura, Makardhwaja, Rasa Karpura, Rasa Pushpa and Malla Sindura, etc. are examples of Kupipakva Rasa

Preparation of Pottali Rasa: 

The Kajjali prepared by grinding mercury and sulphur with other ingredients is tightly wrapped in a cloth especially silk cloth termed as Pottali. Sulphur powder taken in a wide mouthed pan and kept on fire due to which sulphur get melt. The bundle of Kajjali (Pottali) prepared earlier is immersed into the melted sulphur which further subjected to heating. The Kajjali wrapped in silk cloth becomes hard and converts into Pottali Rasa. The burnt cloth removed by scratching and Pottali Rasa is stored for further uses. Hemagarbha Pottali Rasa is an example of Pottali Rasa formulation.

General methods involves in Rasashastra:

Minerals and metals subjected to Shodhana and Maarana processes. Shodhana involves grinding with specific media or heating for purification purpose. Cow milk, cow urine, sesame oil, juice & extract of plants and butter milk, etc. are used for this purpose. The Maarana involves grinding of therapeutically purified material with decoctions of plant and juices, etc., thereafter incineration of ground material in closed container was performed to get fine and soft product.

Sometimes Bhasma or raw materials of Bhasma subjected to specific processing to acquire desire qualities, these procedures are Amritikarana and Lohitikarana. This type of procedure mainly require for specific types of Bhasma i.e.; Abhraka Bhasma. The Amritikarana involves cooking of Bhasma with ghee and decoction of Triphalaa while Lohitikarana involves incineration of Bhasma with specified medicinal plants 8-10.

Conclusion

Khalvi Rasa, Parpati Rasa, Kupipakwa Rasa and Pottali Rasa are specific formulations prepared from mercury (Rasa) Dravyaas. Ayurveda described particular methods for the preparation of these Rasa Dravyaas. Shodhana is process used for the purification of such Rasa Dravya. Shodhana removes visible foreign material, pacify harmful activity, alter undesirable physical and chemical properties and enhances intended therapeutic action of Rasa Dravya. Maarana is another processes involved in the preparation of Rasa drugs. Maarana is process of incineration or calcination which performed in two stages Bhaavana and Putapaaka. These all special methods involved in the preparation of Rasa Dravya imparts desirable qualities in formulations, reduces toxicity, improves self life and palatability. These all preparatory methods convert non compatible forms of minerals and metals into biological compatible form which are non toxic for human use and posses some therapeutic values.

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