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Year : 2015  |  Volume : 3  |  Issue : 2  |  Page : 31-39

Kaphaja unmada: Myxedema psychosis?

Department of Kaya Chikitsa, Parul Institute of Ayurveda, Parul University, Vadodara, Gujarat, India

Correspondence Address:
Kshama Gupta
Department of Kaya Chikitsa, Parul Institute of Ayurveda, Parul University, Vadodara, Gujarat
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/ijny.ijoyppp_10_16

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Unmada (a broad term which denotes various psychiatric problems under one umbrella) is a major psychiatric illness described in all Ayurvedic classics which is characterized by deranged mental functions. The etymological meaning of Unmada is “a state of disturbed mental functions.” Kaphaja Unmada is one among the five types of Unmada, which is caused by the aggravation of Kapha dosha. The description of Kaphaja Unmada is available in all classical texts of Ayurveda along with its symptomatology. Previous works have correlated ”Kaphaja Unmada” with “depressive disorder”/“depression”/“major depressive disorder.” The symptomatology of Kaphaja Unmada and depressive disorder is 70% similar, but some of the signs and symptoms of Kaphaja Unmada such as laala sighanaka sravanam, swapna nityata, svayathuranane, shukla stimita malopadigdha akshata, naari priyata, chhardi, balam cha bhukte, ushnasevi, nakhadi shauklyam, kasa, and raatrau bhrisham are not seen in depressive disorders and they denote hypersomnia, puffiness of face, pernicious or megaloblastic anemia, hypersexual behavior, vomiting, nocturnal and postprandial aggravation, cold intolerance, depression, and dementia conditions which are due to the underlying hypothyroidism instead of depression only. These signs and symptoms can be explained in a better way when Kaphaja Unmada is compared with myxedema/hypothyroidism with depression. The present study considers that Kaphaja Unmada is more similar with hypothyroidism with depression/myxedema madness/myxedema psychosis than primary depression/typical depression alone.

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