Cardiomyopathy is a disease of the heart muscles which affects the function of the heart to pump blood efficiently to the entire body. Common symptoms include breathlessness, swelling of the lower extremities, abdominal bloating, fatigue, palpitations and dizziness. Coronary artery disease, valvular heart disease, high blood pressure, metabolic disorders and prolonged alcohol and drug abuse are the common causes of this condition. Cardiomyopathy can be mainly of 3 types: dilated, hypertrophic and restrictive. Cardiomyopathy may result in complications like heart failure, thrombosis and cardiac arrest.
The Ayurvedic treatment of cardiomyopathy is aimed at reducing the symptoms and treating the cause of the condition. Medicines like Laxmi-Vilas-Ras, Shrung-Bhasma, Makar-Dhwaj, Arjun (Terminalia arjuna), Punarnava (Boerhaavia diffusa), Amalaki (Emblica officinalis) and Haritaki (Terminalia chebula) are used to improve heart function and reduce symptoms like breathlessness, swelling of the ankles and bloating. Triphala-Guggulu, Medohar-Guggulu, Triphala (Three fruits), Trikatu (Three pungent herbs), Lashuna (Allium sativum), Psyllium (Plantago ovata), Shallaki (Boswellia serrata), Guggulu (Commiphora mukul) and Kutki (Picrorrhiza kurroa) are used to treat coronary artery disease. Medicines like Panch-Tikta-Ghrut-Guggulu, Laxadi-Guggulu, Asthishrunkhala (Cissus quadrangularis), Dashmool (Ten roots) and Draksha (Vitis vinifera) are used to treat valvular heart disease.
Metabolic disorders such as thyroid disease or diabetes are treated with medicines like Arogya-Vardhini, Kachnaar-Guggulu, Haridra (Curcuma longa), Shilajit (Purified bitumen), Nimba (Azadirachta indica), Vijaysaar (Pterocarpus marsupium), Mamejva (Enicostemma littorale) and Gudmar (Gymnema sylvester).
Medicines which act directly on the heart muscle are used to treat the different types of cardiomyopathy. These include Amalaki, Haritaki, Behada (Terminalia bellerica), Sunthi (Zinziber officinalis), Marich (Piper nigrum), Pippali (Piper longum), Patol (Tricosanthe dioica), Saariva (Hemidesmus indicus), Patha (Cissampelos pareira), Musta (Cyperus rotundus) and Kutaj (Holarrhina antidysentrica). In addition, medicines like Maha-Laxmi-Vilas-Ras, Bruhat-Vat-Chintamani, Suvarna-Sameer-Pannag-Ras, Abhrak-Bhasma and Suvarna-Bhasma are used in minute doses to give strength to the heart.
Ayurvedic treatment can be combined with modern treatment to control the symptoms of cardiomyopathy, improve the quality of life, prevent complications and prolong survival. All patients affected with this condition need to adopt appropriate lifestyle changes like avoiding alcohol and smoking, losing excess weight, eating a low salt diet and getting regular, moderate exercise.