Author: Dr. Vikram Chauhan

Methods of Diagnosis in Ayurveda

Ayurveda is science of life which is composed of two sanskrit words (“ayur = life and “veda” = knowledge or science). It is a natural healing system which has been originated around 5000 years ago in the Vedic culture of India.

In Ayurveda it is believed that good health depends on an appropriate balance between body, mind and spirit. Ayurveda works on this concept that use of herbs, a balanced diet and a good life style can cure ailments.

Concept of Ayurveda


According to Ayurveda, everything in the universe either it is living or non living is connected with each other. Good health can be achieved when body, mind and spirit are in equilibrium with universe. Disruption of this equilibrium leads to poor health.

Every individual is having five basic elements as in the universe-

  • Space
  • Air
  • Fire
  • Water
  • Earth

These elements combine in the body and form the three energies called as doshas. These three energies are responsible to maintain the physical and mental health. Three energies are vata (wind), pitta (fire) and kapha (earth+ water). These energies are important to maintain the good health. Imbalance of any of three energies results in the health complications.

वायु: पित्तं कफश्चेति त्रयो दोषा: समासत: विकृताऽविकृता देहं घ्नन्ति ते वर्त्तयन्ति

The above vedic text explains that vata (vayu), pitta (fire) and kapha (earth) are the three doshas in the body. Appropriate balance of three doshas leads to the health whereas imbalance in tridoshas is responsible for diseases.

Methods of diagnosis in Ayurveda

ayurveda diginosis

Diagnosis is very important aspect of Ayurvedic treatment. Diagnosis means to find out the basic cause of a disease (Nidan). Without the proper diagnosis it is difficult to suggest medicine and cure the diseases.

Causative factors of diseases may be improper eating habits, life style and various other activities. In Ayurveda, treatment is done according to constitution of an individual.

Two Main methods of Diagnosis in Ayurveda:

  • Rog Pariksha ( Diagnosis of a disease)
  • Rogi Pariksha ( Examination of a patient)
  • Rog Pariksha ( Diagnosis of a disease)

It has been mentioned in Charak Samhita  vimaan sthan chapter 4.

Three ayurvedic diagnostic methods are applied for diagnosis of disease :

  • Aaptoupdesh(As is advised by ancient sages)
  • Pratyaksh(Direct observation)
  • Anumaan(Guess worke.g. to know digestive power of patient)
  • Rogi Pariksha ( Examination of a patient) –It is done by three methods of diagnosis in Ayurveda:

!)Tri-fold examination of a patient was given by Maharshi Vagbhata (the author of text book of Ashtanghridayam)

  • Observation (Darshan).
  • Touch, palpation and percussion(Sparshan)
  • Questioning (Prashan).

2) TENFOLD EXAMINATION (DASHVIDHA PAREKSHA) – Tenfold examination was given byAcharya Charaka in Charak Samhita  vimaan sthan chapter 8

Ten-fold examination of a patient has following 10 methods:

  • Prakriti (Body type/ Body constitution)
  • Vikriti (illness)
  • Sara(Outlook of patient)
  • Samhanan, (Type of food consumption like vegetarian and non –vegetarian)
  • Satva (Mental strength of patient)
  • Satmya (What suits to patient)
  • Aaharshakti (Food intake)
  • Vyayam-shakti( Physical fitness )
  • Vaya (Age)

Pramana( The quantitative measures) for examining a patient. Abnormalities related to the Structure and functions of body are observed.

3) EIGHTFOLD EXAMINATION (ASTHAVIDHA) – Eightfold examination as the name suggests that there are eight methods for the diagnosis. These types are more practical and useful.  It helps to get on quick diagnosis of an OPD patient. The Eight-fold examination of a patient has given by Yogratnakara

methods of ayurveda

In above Ayurvedic text it is explained that there are eight things (nadi -pulse, mala- feces, mutra- urine, jihva – tongue, shabda – hoarseness of voice, sparsha – touch, drik – examination of eyes, akruti – shape of body) which are to be examined by ayurvedic physician for making proper diagnosis of a disease.

pulse diagnosis in Ayurveda

  • Pulse examination (Nadi preekshan) – In this examination strength, rhythm and speed of pulse are observed to make a diagnosis.
  • If pulse is felt irregular (missing at intervals) or moving fast it can be compared to moving like a snake (sarpavat) that means vata is dominant in that pulse.
  • If pulse is having good volume with a throb and it can be compared to jumping frog (mandookvat) then pitta is dominant in that pulse.
  • If pulse is heavy or slow and its movement is like moving swan (hansvat) then kapha is dominant in that pulse.
  • Urine examination (Mootra preeksha) – Color and turbidity of urine is observed by naked eyes.
  • Fecal examination (Mala preeksha) –Examination of fecal matter is also done by naked eyes in order to see blood in stool and its floating nature (jalnimajan preeksha).
  • Tongue observation (Jivha preekshan) – Tongue of patient is examined for any discoloration, ulcers and white coating.
  • Examination of the voice and speech of pateint (Swar preekshan) – Hoarseness of voice is observed.
  • Skin and touch examination (Sparash preekshan) – Temperature of body, color and texture of skin is observed by Sparash preeksha.
  • Observation of eyes (Netra preekshan) – Color of iris, sclera and conjunctiva is observed.

What is Ayurveda – Dr Vikram Chauhan

Ayurveda is ancient system of medicine in the world. It is originated in India about 5000 years ago. The word Ayurveda means “science of life and it is derived from two Sanskrit words ayur(life) and veda(science or knowledge).

ayrveda tios

This shloka is from Charak Samhita and its meaning is Ayurveda is a science that describes the advantages, disadvantages, happy and unhappy state of life and what is good or bad for life and its span. It is an ancient science which deals with not only longevity but also maintaining healthy body and mind. It is a science of body and mind

ayurvedic treatment of all diseases

MULBHOOT SIDDHANTA (Basic Principles of Ayurveda)

Ayurveda lies on two basic principles which are explained below:

  • Dosha-Dhatu-Mala Siddhanta
  • Panchamahabhoot Siddhant

Dosha-Dhatu-Mala Siddhanta

“Doshadhatumalamulam hi shariram”

This siddhanta explains the basic constitution ofhuman beings- three doshas, seven dhatus and three malas.

  • Tridoshas– These are also called tri-energies. There are three main doshas in the body which are Vata, Pitta and Kapha. Balance of all three doshas make body healthy and normal and imbalanced state is considered as diseased state. Ayurvedic treatment mainly lies on the balance of all three doshas.
  • Sapta Dhatu– It explains the body consists of seven dhatus which are given below:
  • Rasa (Plasma) Its main function is Prinan (to provide nourishment to body).
  • Rakta (Blood) It is considered very important for sustaining life.
  •  Mamsa (Muscle) It covers all the internal body components and performs function of Lepan.
  • Meda (Fat tissue) Its main role is Snehan means oleation in different body parts like lubrication to joints and it also provide extra safety to tissues.
  • Asthi (Bones) It provides support to body (Dharan).
  • Majja (Bone Marrow) It is located in the hollow cavity of bones and it helps to provide extra support.
  • Shukra (Semen) Its main function is in reproduction.
  • Mala– There are three malas in body- Purish (faeces), Mutra (Urine) and Sweda (sweat).five-elements-ayurveda

Panchamahabhoot Siddhant

It explains that human body is composed of five basic elements (Panchamahabhoot) namely- Prithvi (earth), Jal (water), Tej (fire), Vayu (air) and Akaash (ether).  It is said that:

“Yatha loke tatha dehe”.

It means that if these elements are in equilibrium then body is healthy and functions smoothly. And its imbalance causes illness.

            समदोष:समाग्निच्श्र  समधातुमलक्रिय:
         प्रसन्नात्मेन्द्रियमना: स्वस्थ इत्यभिधीयते॥ (सुश्रुत)

  • It is a Sanskrit version in ayurvedic text which explains health:
  • Samdosha meaning balanced doshas- vata, pitta and kapha
  • Samaagnishcha means balanced agni or digestive or metabolic fire.
  • Samadhatu meaning dhatus or tissues are well nourished.
  • Malakriya meaning balance in excretion or waste disposal through urine, stool and sweat.
  • Prasanna atma means peaceful soul.
  • Prasanna indriya means balanced senses.
  • Prasanna manah means happy state of mind.
  • If all these are balanced then a person is called healthy. Any deviation or disruption or any Imbalance of these is called a disease.

How Ayurveda works?

According to Ayurveda, all creations are made up of five elements: ether, air, water, earth and fire. These are basic aspects of human life. On the basis of these elements Ayurveda works. When these elements are balanced and strong then person works in a healthy way. Imbalance of any three doshas results in disease. Panchkarma Therapy (Sanshodhan): It is useful to remove extra toxins from body by bio-purificatory methods.

Pacification (Shaman): It works through diet, lifestyle changes, herbs etc.


There are two main classifications of Ayurvedic Texts:

  • Brihat trayi
  • Laghu trayi
  • BRIHAT TRAYI: Major Ayurveda Texts

It is comprised of three treatises- Charak Samhita, Sushrut Samhita and Ashtang Haridya.

  • Charak Samhita: It is the oldest Ayurveda text which is written by Acharya Charak. He is regarded as father of medicine. He explain eight branches of Ayurveda and Panchkarama.
  • Sushrut Samita: It is written by Acharya Sushrut. He is the father of surgery. He explained the human anatomy and various surgeries. He followed Dhanwantri  School of thought.
  • Ashtang Haridaya: It is combination of Charak and Sushrut Samhita. It is written by Acharya Vagbhata.
  • LAGHU TRAYI: Minor Ayurveda texts

It is comprised of three treatises- Madhav Nidan, Sharangdhar Samhita and Bhava Prakash Samhita.

  • Madhav Nidan: It is an ayurvedic text written by Acharya Madhav. It mainly works on pathogenesis of disease (Roga Vinishchaya) like causes, symptoms, complications and treatment.
  • Sharangdhar Samhita: It is written by Acharya Sharandhara. It includes information of different formulations. It describes general description of health, and pulse diagnosis.
  • Bhava Prakash Samhita: It is written by Acharya Bhavmisra. It includes all information related to herbs, diseases and different formulation used in Ayurveda.


The Ayurveda is an ancient medicine system which is divided into eight branches:

  • Kaaya Chikitsa (Internal medicine)
  • Kaumar Bhritya (Pediatrics treatment)
  • Bhoot Vidya (Psychiatry)
  • Shalakya Tantra (treatment of eyes, nose, throat, head related disease)
  • Shalya Tantra (Surgery)
  •  Agad Tantra (toxicology)
  •  Rasayana (Geriatrics)
  • Vajjikarana (Aphrodisiac therapy)
  • Kaaya Chikitsa: Kaaya means agni – the digestive fire in the body. It is holistic approach of medicine which is mainly helpful in treatment of whole body. It is related to metabolism in the body. If imbalance of kaaya occurs it results in many diseases. It deals with treatment of diseases by balancing agni.
  • Baala Chikitsa:  It is also called Kaumara Bhritya. It is the branch of Ayurveda which is concerned with treatment of children.
  • Bhoot Vidya: It is the branch of ayurvedic science which deals with treatment of diseases of mind.
  • Shalakya Tantra: It mainly deals with treatment of eyes, nose, throat and ears.
  • Shalya Tantra: It deals with surgery.
  • Agad Tantra: It includes the study of poisonous substances.
  • Rasayan Chikitsa: It deals with various aspects of healthcare. Its main aim is to achieve long and healthy life,  memory, complexion glow and strength
  •  Bajikaran Chikitsa: It deals with problems of shukra dhatu in the body.