Leech Therapy is a type of blood letting therapy which is done with the application of leeches. In Ayurveda, Susrutha has described it as jalaukavcharan which is a procedure of panchkarma. The term Jalauka can be split into Jala + Oka Jala (Water) + Oka (Housing place) = Jalauka. Avacharan means application. Description of 2 varieties of Jalauka are found i.e. 1.Poisonous group (Savisha) 2.Non-poisonous group (Nirvisha). In Modern medicine it is known as Hirudotherapy. During the process of sucking, leeches secrete various biological enzymes like Hirudin in to the blood though its saliva. It is one important component which act as anti-coagulant. Leech helps to improve blood flow to region where it has slowed or stopped, thus prevents tissue-death.
Leech therapy/ hirudotherapy can be used in different diseases like- Vidradhi (Abscess), Gulma (Abdominal swelling), Arsha (Piles), Kushtha (Skin disease), Vatarakta (Gout), Krostruka shirsha (Infective arthritis), Sandhi gata roga (Arthritis), Kantharoga (Goiter), Netraroga (Eye diseases), Granthi (Nodular swelling), Arbuda (Cancer), Shlipada (Filaria), Vidarika (Crackle), Vishadamshtra (Insect bite), Visharpa (Erysipelas), Siroroga (Diseases of scalp), Dantaveshta (Pyorrhea) and Plastic and reconstructive Surgery. Management of various chronic disorders like chronic eczema, psoriasis, osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, gout , inflammatory reactions, acne vulgaris, varicose veins, rheumatic diseases, Ischemic heart disease, complicated wounds , diabetic wound, boils and abscesses, thrombosis (blood clot), alopecia and many painful conditions. Leech therapy also known as ayurvedic para-surgery for various disorder. It was developed 5000 year ago by indian doctors (Rishi-Munis) in the name of indian healthcare system- Ayurveda.