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Osteoarthritis and Cervical Spondylosis in the modern perspective?

Often called wear-and-tear arthritis, Osteoarthritis occurs when the protective cartilage on the ends of your bones wears down over time. While Osteoarthritis can damage any joint in your body, the disorder most commonly affects joints in your hands, neck, lower back, knees and hips.

Are CervicalSpondylosis and Spondylitis Arthritic conditions?

  • Spondylosisis a name for a kind of spinal condition like degenerative Osteoarthritis
  • Spondylitis is an inflammation of the spine. It is not surprising that people get these terms mixed up.

Pain in the neck is common and may be a natural consequence of ageing in people over 50. Like the rest of the body, bones in the neck (cervical spine) progressively degenerate, as we grow older. Over time, arthritis of the neck (Cervical Spondylosis) may result in bony spurs and problems with ligaments and disks. The spinal canal may narrow (stenosis) and compress the spinal cord and nerves to the arms. A previous neck injury can predispose one to Spondylosis, but the major risk factor is aging.

An X-ray, CT/MRI, EMG etc. will reveal the severity of the condition. The goal of treatment is relief of pain and prevention of degeneration and nerve injury. Symptoms of Cervical Spondylosis usually stabilise with simple,conservative therapy.

Ayurvedic Perspective

The Ayurvedic concept of physical health revolves around the concept of three physiological components namely Vata, Pitta, Kapha and their divisions. The vital force, Vata is concerned with all sort of movements ranging from joint and muscle movements to the movements at the cellular level. When this Vata is well harmonized and functions in a balanced manner, it results in healthy joints.When there is an imbalance or disharmony, it results in various kinds of ailments. Ayurveda describes old age as a Vata age, which is why a majority of patients suffering from arthritis fall in this age group.

According to Ayurveda, Osteoarthritis is due to the imbalance of Vata dosha manifested in the weak joints, and is known as ‘Sandhigatavata’.

Cervical Spondylosis is nothing other than Osteoarthritis, which affects the neck vertebrae.

Treatment approaching Ayurveda?

  • Reduction of inflammation in joints or the balance of Vata.
  • Strengthen / revitalize the affected joints and body (Nutrition, Tonics).

Causes & risks


  • Primary Osteoarthritis is mostly related to aging. The water content of the cartilage decreases and the protein makeup of cartilage degenerate.
  • Some of the hereditary causes of Osteoarthritis are due to defects in collagen, which is an important component of cartilage.
  • Conditions that can lead to secondary Osteoarthritis include obesity, repeated trauma or surgery to the joint structures, abnormal joints at birth, gout and diabetes.
  • Growth hormone disorders and menopausal hormone imbalance


  • With lifestyle changes and premature aging
  • Women are more likely to develop Osteoarthritis especially post menopause.
  • Joint injuries increase the risk of Osteoarthritis.
  • Carrying more body weight places more stress on your weight-bearing joints, which causes Osteoarthritis.
  • Sedentary lifestyle.
  • A job that includes repetitive stress on a particular joint may predispose the occurrence of Osteoarthritis on that joint.
  • Health conditions like diabetes, underactive thyroid or gout


  • Swelling on Joint
  • Tenderness (pain while applying pressure on joint)
  • Joint stiffness and reduced mobility
  • Crepetes (i.e. grating sensation while moving the joint)
  • Extra bone growth, which feel like hard lumps around the affected joint

BKV Treatment

How is Birla Kerala Vaidyashala’s ayurvedic treatment different from any other treatment?

Our line of treatment is based on the following 2 approaches:

  • Samana [Pacification] - Subside the problem (balance Vata) internally with medications. Eg: RasnadiKashayam, Guggulu Thikthakam Kashayam
  • Shodhana [Purification] - Otherwise called Panchakarma.

Ayurveda treatments aim to reduce pain, prevent degeneration with joint support therapies and maintain joint movement so that the patient can go about their daily tasks.

Birla Kerala Vaidyashala’s authentic way of curing Osteoarthritis

Lifestyle Modification and Management

  • Stick to gentle exercises, such as walking, bicycling or swimming which can increase endurance and strengthen the muscles around the joints, making them more stable.
  • Avoid exercising tender, injured or swollen joints.
  • Even a small amount of weight loss can relieve some pressure and reduce your pain.

BKV therapies

  • Kizhi: Minced herbal leaves are cooked in medicated oils and bundled into a bolus of muslin cloth, which is heated and patted rhythmically all over the body. This treatment is for relieving spasm, stiffness, pains and aches.
  • Abhyangam: A therapy with specific herbal oils to increase the tissue strength, blood circulation, revitalise the whole body, promote vitality and reduce stress.
  • Pizhichil: In this treatment, luke warm medicated oil is squeezed over the body of the patient with a piece of cloth. This treatment has proved more effective when there is more inflammation of joints.
  • Upanaham: This therapy is done by application of herbal paste over the affected area. This treatment is very effective in Osteo-arthritis, joint injuries and localized pain and swelling.
  • Nasyam: In this treatment herbal juices and medicated oils are applied through the nose.

One has to undergo a detailed consultation with our specialists from Kerala for prescription medicines and personalized therapies.

Treatment duration:

Birla Kerala Vaidyashala’s experienced Kerala Ayurveda panel of doctors recommend to maintain consistency for results (No. of days/ repeat treatments with period of time as per individual’s Prakriti). There are no short-term medicines for any chronic diseases; therefore, long-term medication and therapies are required to control the problem.


I had pain in my knee joints. As prescribed by the doctor I had undergone 14 days of treatment. I was unable to walk but now things have improved considerably. Please undergo this treatment if you are suffering from diseases like arthritis, gout, etc. This is more important for individuals above 40 years old. The doctors & guest relation executive were the most pleasing factors in my course of treatment at Birla Kerala Vaidyashala.
Mr. B.P Kamath, Mumbai, India

Excellent treatment has been given for my joint pain during my 21 days stay at this hospital. All my neck pain had gone within 21 days of treatment. I am sure with further treatment my pain will vanish forever.
Mr. Raman Iyer, Chennai, India