Pleurisy is caused due to the inflammation of the pleura, the lining that surround the lungs. When inflamed pleural layers rub against each other while breathing, it causes sharp pain in the chest. Though there could be several causes, viral infections spreading from the lungs to the pleural cavity are mostly responsible. In Ayurveda, this condition is known as parshwashool.


According to modern science, pleurisy is caused by bacterial, viral, fungal or parasitic infections. Many diseases such as tuberculosis, pneumonia, rheumatoid arthritis, lung cancer, lymphoma, cystic fibrosis, cardiac ischaemia, pericarditis, etc. can also cause this problem. Injury to the lungs, heart surgery, and dissection of aorta may also precipitate pleurisy. Ancient Ayurvedic texts have also considered tuberculosis to be responsible for causing parshwashool.


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    Ayurvedic View

    According to Ayurveda, all three doshas viz. vata, pitta kapha play roles in causing parshwashool. Vayu gets aggaraved and collects from the body into the lungs. This kapha is thick. Pitta is hot in nature. So it liquefies kapha and converts it into watery fluid. As a result, there is accumulation of watery liquid in lungs. This aggravation of kapha can extinguish the gastric fire and hamper the digestion. Effective treatment is available in Ayurveda for parshwashool which includes certain Ayurvedic therapies, herbs and diet changes. The treatment also addresses digestion to achieve a permanent cure.

    Diet & Lifestyle Advice

    • Pleurisy is a acute condition that lasts from few days to two weeks. During this period, the person should take complete rest and avoid exertion, exposure to rain, cold, AC, hot sun and infections.
    • Light simple warm food should be taken that is not too oily and spicy. Cold water, cold drinks, ice creams should be avoided.

    Home Remedies

    • Take a mixture of powdered cinnamon, cardamom and pepper with honey thrice a day.