Ventricular Tachycardia (VT) is a condition in which the heart rate is more than 100 per minute, and the cause of this condition originates distal to the Bundle of His, from which the normal heart rhythm originates. This condition causes symptoms like giddiness, palpitations and breathlessness, and may be associated with an increased risk of sudden death. Associated heart disease usually indicates a more serious prognosis. Modern medicine usually treats this condition with drugs, implantable cardioverter-defibrillator or endocardial catheter ablation therapies.

The Ayurvedic management of this condition consists of symptomatic treatment, treatment of the possible cause, and treatment of associated conditions. Symptomatic treatment includes the use of medicines like Bruhat-Vat-Chintamani, Maha-Laxmi-Vilas-Ras, Nardiya-Laxmi-Vilas-Ras, Siddha-Makar-Dhwaj-Ras, Hemgarbha-Ras and Jawahar-Mohra-Ras. These medicines regulate and normalize the disturbed conduction system of the heart. Medicines like Maha-Vat-Vidhvans-Ras, Vat-Gaj-Ankush-Ras, Ekangveer-Ras, Agni-Tundi-Vati and Vish-Tinduk-Vati also help in regulating the disturbed electric-impulse mechanism of the heart.

Heart disease like previous myocardial infarct, coronary artery disease, and cardiomyopathy can also contribute to this condition. These problems can be minimized by using herbal medicines like Arjuna (Terminalia arjuna), Punarnava (Boerhaavia diffusa), Shrunga-Bhasma, Pushkarmul (Inula racemosa), Kutki (Picrorrhiza kurroa), Lashuna (Allium sativum), Amalaki (Emblica officinalis), guggulu (Commiphora mukul), and Psyllium (Plantago ovata). Medicines like Laxadi-Guggulu, Punarnavadi-Guggulu, Panch-Tikta-Ghrut-Guggulu and Trayo-Dashang-Guggulu can be used to heal the damaged muscle-fibres of the heart. Punarnavadi -Qadha (decoction), Gokshuradi- Qadha, Yava-Kshar and Mulak-Kshar are used to reduce the work load on the heart, while Drakshasav, Dashmoolarishta, and Arjunarishta are used to strengthen the heart.

Medicated oils and Ghrutas (Ghee) like Maha-Narayan-Oil, Maha-Mash-Oil, Saindhav-Oil, Laxadi-Oil, Shata-Dhout -Ghruta, Panch-Tikta-Ghruta, Dashmool-Ghruta, Ashwagandha-Ghruta, Arjuna- Ghruta and Arjuna-Ksheer-Pak are used internally and for local application on the chest, combined with mild, local fomentation. These procedures can be highly useful in the treatment of VT; however, caution needs to be exercised in patients with a deranged cholesterol and lipid profile, as well as those with a history of coronary artery disease or unstable blood pressure.

Ayurvedic medicines can be given in this condition along with modern medicines or surgical treatment modalities. Keeping in mind the risk of sudden death, all patients should be under the regular care and supervision of a cardiologist or a cardiac surgeon.

Ventricular Tachycardia – Ayurvedic Herbal Treatment by Abdulmubeen Mundewadi