Sushruta

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Shushrut Statue In Patanjali Yogpeeth, Haridwar

Sushruta, or Suśruta was an ancient Indian physician known as the main author of the treatise The Compendium of Suśruta (Sanskrit: Suśruta-saṃhitā). The Mahabharata, an ancient Indian epic text, represents him as a son of Vishvamitra, which coincides with the present recension of Sushruta Samhita. Kunjalal Bhisagratna opined that it is safe to assume that Sushruta was the name of the clan to which Vishvamitra belonged. He is one of a number of individuals described as the "Father of surgery" and "Father of Plastic Surgery".

Quotes[edit]

  • The great names in Hindu medicine are those of Sushruta in the fifth century before, and Charaka in the second century after Christ. Sushruta, professor of medicine in the University of Benares, wrote down in Sanskrit a system of diagnosis and therapy whose elements had descended to him from his teacher Dhanwantari. His book dealt at length with surgery, obstetrics, diet, bathing, drugs, infant feeding and hygiene, and medical education.
    • Will Durant, Our Oriental Heritage : India and Her Neighbors.
  • Sushruta described many surgical operations—cataract, hernia, lithotomy, Cæsarian section, etc.—and 121 surgical instruments, including lancets, sounds, forceps, catheters, and rectal and vaginal speculums. Despite Brahmanical prohibitions he advocated the dissection of dead bodies as indispensable in the training of surgeons. He was the first to graft upon a torn ear portions of skin taken from another part of the body; and from him and his Hindu successors rhinoplasty—the surgical reconstruction of the nose—descended into modern medicine. “The ancient Hindus,” says Garrison, “performed almost every major operation except ligation of the arteries.” Limbs were amputated, abdominal sections were performed, fractures were set, hemorrhoids and fistulas were removed. Sushruta laid down elaborate rules for preparing an operation, and his suggestion that the wound be sterilized by fumigation is one of the earliest known efforts at antiseptic surgery. Both Sushruta and Charaka mention the use of medicinal liquors to produce insensibility to pain. In 927 A.D. two surgeons trepanned the skull of a Hindu king, and made him insensitive to the operation by administering a drug called Samohini. For the detection of the 1120 diseases that he enumerated, Sushruta recommended diagnosis by inspection, palpation, and auscultation.
    • Will Durant, Our Oriental Heritage : India and Her Neighbors.

External links[edit]

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