Monday, April 28, 2014

Susruta, Renowned Surgeon of Ancient India

According to Ancient History, Susruta is believed to be the son of Visvamitra in the Susrutasamhita, though the exact identity of Visvamitra is not known.

Susruta was made to study Ayurveda with special emphasis on Salya or surgery under the training of Divodasa Kasi Raja Dhanvantari during the Upanishadic age who explained briefly the nature of the person afflicted with disease andwho is to be treated.

He also explained the nature of disease which would cause pain and its eradication, the type of food, the dravyas as well as the time factor. He further asked his student to consult as many disciplines as necessary to attain adequate knowledge on related subject.

The text contents referred to Krishna and the identity and chronology of his father Visvamitra seemed to be confusing. Susruta was a renowned surgeon of ancient India though there were considerable amount of controversy about his age.

Author of Susrutasamhita

Broken parts of arrows or other sharp pointed weapons were regarded as the common and most dangerous foreign objects which would cause wounds and some in need of surgical treatment.

This primitive means of surgery was an old ancient remedial treatment. Susruta was the author of the Susrutasamhita and the work is known after his name. The Susrutasamhita has minute details of pre-operative and post-operative care, techniques, diet, indication as well as contradictions together with complication.

His belief was that knowledge of both surgery and medicine was essential to constitute an excellent doctor who without this knowledge would be like a bird with only one wing.

Father of Indian Surgery

He was one of the most intelligent surgeons in Indian medical literature and was recognized as the father of Indian surgery.

The origin of the surgery of the accidental loss of leg of Vispala who was given an iron leg to walk with can be traced back to the earliest time, way back to the Indus Civilisation as suggested by some artefacts.

Ancient thoughts on medicine and surgery were confined to texts known as Kalpas or small monographs and early Indian medical literature were full of these handbooks monographs. Agnivesa was responsible in giving shape to such knowledge by collecting, pruning, enlarging and focusing on important aspects into text books of medicine in early 1200 BC.

Ancient Indian medical practitioners were divided into two categories namely the Salya-cikitsakas or surgeons and the Kaya-cikitsakas or physicians and surgery had not been included into the encyclopaedic tradition as represented by the Agnivesatantra. It was only through Sasruta’s efforts that surgery achieved a position in general medical training.
His contribution to Plastic/Ophthalmic Surgery

Susruta is also remembered for his contribution to plastic surgery since he had laid down its basic principle describing various types of rotations and pedicle flaps and was the pioneer of reconstructive rhinoplasty.

Besides plastic surgery he was also an expert in ophthalmic surgery and reading his extracts on cataract extraction, held many in awe on such an operation carried out by him during the 8th century BC.

Surgery in India reached great heights during the era of Susruta and credits goes to him in bringing about such surgical heritage to the country.Do visit for more information on history mystery

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