Relation of Hemapheresis with Raktashodhana in Ayurveda


Hemapheresis is the collection of blood components or the removal of the parts of blood using automated equipment. We will tell about the process, indications and how this is related to ayurveda and certain medications of this disease. In this method rakt shodan is done to detoxify the impurities. And certain other procedures of panchkarma are done to remove the impurities and  herbs are also provided that we will discuss further.



Hemapheresis is the therapeutic plasma exchange (TPE) which involves removing blood from the donor. In this particular part of blood such as plasma and platelet is removed, and removing part then it is returned to the bloodstream of the patient and donor. TpE is a safe procedure and well tolerated. Death is rare 0.1% of all procedures. It is the unilateral paresis , the weakness of the one side of the body. In this various processes are done like erythrocytapheresis , plasmapheresis, plateletpheresis.

Process of Hemapheresis

Hemapheresis involves the direct blood into the donor veins through tubing to a machine which separates blood and its components. This procedure is generally centrifugation. After this separation the desired component is removed and the other is reinfused into the patient. This is a painless procedure and 2 hour time is required for this process. There are four centrifugation variables- the first variable is the speed and bowl diameter, the second is sit time, in the third solutes are added and the fourth is plasma volume and cellular content.

There are various categories of collection of component

  • Plasmapheresis– is useful in ABO blood group patients, in this procedure fresh frozen plasma is collected.
  • Erythrocytapheresis-Is the removal of erythrocytes from whole blood and is mainly done in sickle cell anaemia patients.
  • Plateletpheresis – It is a blood platelet in which a collection of the platelets is done by apheresis using various components.
  • Leukapheresis– removal of the basophils, or the patients who are ineffective for traditional therapy.
  • Stem cell harvesting– They are circulating bone cells into bone marrow transplants.


  • Guillain barre syndrome -is the rare disorder which attacks the nerves  of the immune system.
  • Myasthenia gravis(acute short term treatment) is characterised by weakness and fatigueness of the muscles.
  • Good posture syndrome – is an acute illness which affects the lungs and kidneys.
  • Chronic inflammatory demyelinating polyneuropathy- is the neurological disorder progressively weakness and sensory functions in arms and legs

Relation of Hemapheresis with Raktashodhana

Raktshodhana is the process where the detoxification is done by many various methods. It cleanses the body and removes the impurities out of it . These procedures are performed by the ayurveda doctors. It is the purification of blood which can be done by two methods

  • Local purification which can be done of the localised area of the hand legs which is not spreading.
  • Systemic purification- This is further explained in panchkarma. This is done by four methods :
  • Shrings (by the use of horns)
  • Jaloukavacharna (leech therapy)
  • Siravedan (multiple punctures)
  • Alabu (gourds)

A siravedann process is also done, that is venesection. In the systemic purification there is the whole body involved. Certain herbs are also provided such as tikta kashaya katu ras that are beneficial in blood purifications.


1. Jaloka Avacharan

This is ashastrakrita. Jaloka mainly live in cold places and are mainly found in water. There are 12 types of jaloka found, in which 6 are savish jaloka and 6 are nirvish jaloka. Mainly known as leech therapy. Leech therapy (hirudotherapy) – has 34 components. Leech has 32 brains and has an olive colured background. Leech is stored in non chlorinated water, and stored in a tight fit box, change of water is needed twice a week.

  • Chemical constituents of saliva of leech
    • Hirudin- It is an anticoagulant
    • Hyaluronidase-  Foster the flow of blood
  • Hirudotherapy Properties -act as bloodletting, anticoagulant, thrombolytic, immunostimulating.

2. Alabu

This process is done in kapha dushti. Alabu is ruksha, katu, tikshna gunayukt. Alabu has a length of 12 angula. In this bitter gourd is used for this procedure. The affected site is cleaned with all aseptic procedures and fire is extinguished at the affected site and one end of bitter gourd is opened and let drink of blood. After this the gourd is taken out and certain ayurveda thailam ghrita are used for healing.

3. Shringi

This process is done for vat dushti. Shringi is madhur, ushan, snigdha gunyukt. Shring is a cow horn for expelling blood out. In this fluid and pus are coming out of the orifice, on one side hand is kept and from other side blood is drawn out. This is hot in potency and is viable for letting blood out which is caused by vata dushti. But when the dushti is due to kapha dosha then the use of shrings are not used as thickness of blood is more.The horn used in this process should be conical shape.

4. Siravedan

Siravedan is a bloodletting procedure by puncturing. Not more than 768ml of blood should not be expelled out.Different types of instruments are used for blood letting such as kuthari instrument, vrihimukha instrument. Siravedan is mainly done in varsha kaal, grishm ritu, hemant ritu. Siravedan is contraindicated in extreme cold, and hot climates. In siravedan the physician should tap the vein and by holding a sharp instrument must puncture the vein without shaking the hand. After the procedure the site must be washed. Patients who undergo venesection must avoid heat, fear, prolonged sitting because this increases pitta dosha. Ideal siravedan brings lightness in the body.

Herbs Used As Raktashodhak

  1. Manjistha (Rubia cordifolia): It is a famous herb for blood detoxification. Manjistha has guru guna, rooksha (dry), tikta rasa ( bitter) madhura (sweet) and ushana (hot). It balances kapha and pitta. It cleanses the blood and boosts immunity. It provides clear skin.Manjistha is thick and long which has coloured bark.The flowers are small and green in colour. This herb is mainly found in many parts of the world which is called by many different names in every part. It has detoxifying properties, anti-inflammatory  and antimicrobial properties.
  2. Sariva (Hemidesmus indicus): has madhur ( sweet) and tikta (bitter) rasa, has guru guna ( heavy) and snigdha (oily) and is coolant. Sariva is widely used in treatment of anorexia, mennorrhagia.This herb undergoes sweet taste after digestion. Sariva is very helpful in low digestion strength and balances kapha and vata. The root part is used.
  3. Haridra (Curcuma longa): Haridra increases agni as it has ushna virya (hot)  katu tikta ras, haridra cleanses and detoxifies ras (digestive juice) Haridra enables the free moving of vata which is blocked by contaminated kapha and pitta. Haridra has antioxidant property which enable the free circulation of oxygen as many nutrients to the cells.
  4. Neem(Azadirachta indus): known as margosa tree. It has tikta (bitter) and kashaya ras (astringent) laghu guna (light) and katu vipaka.It balances vata dosha and removes ama, purifies the blood and it has antibacterial and antiviral properties. It is a natural detoxifier. It has cold potency, easily digestible and relieves excessive thirst and cures cough. Neem is very useful in healing wounds and in many skin diseases.It balances the pitta dosha, helps in diabetes.
  5. Guduchi-(Tinospora cordifolia): has kshaya(astringent) and tikta ras (bitter) ,has laghu guna (light) with ushna veerya (hot). Used in treatment of many diseases like fever, diabetes, urinary tract infection. It balances tridoshas (vata ,pitta, kapha). It rejuvenates the body and relieves aama digestion. It is hot in potency so it works well in a burning sensation. The main part used is the stem. Guduchi along with jaggery is used to relieve constipation, and is good in anaemic patients.


Hemaphersis is the therapeutic plasma exchange (TPE) which involves removing blood from the donor. It involves the direct blood into the donor veins through tubing to a machine which separates blood and its components. Hemapheresis is related to ayurveda by raktshodana and process of raktamokshana is done by jaloka, alabu, shring and siravedan,which helps in expelling of blood and its toxins from the body.Certain ayurveda herbs are also indicated in hemapheresis such as manjistha, neem, sariva,guduchi are explained as above. If you have any query you may contact us on

Dr. Vikram Chauhan

Dr. Vikram Chauhan (MD - Ayurveda) is the CEO and Founder of Planet Ayurveda Pvt. Ltd. He is Author of the Book "Ayurveda – God’s Manual For Healing". He is an Ayurveda Expert Serving People worldwide through all the Possible Mediums, Operating from Main Branch in Mohali, India. With his Vast Experience in Herbs and their Applied Uses, he is successfully treating Numerous Patients suffering from Various Ailments with the help of Purest Herbal Supplements, Diet, and Lifestyle, according to the Principles of Ayurveda. For More Details, visit

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