Treatment of Dropsy

بسم الله الرحمن الرحيم

Muslim narrated in his sahïh the saying of a group of visiting Arabs: “During our stay in the city of Medina, we experienced bowel abnormality. Our bowels become hardened, our bellies distended, and we felt general malaise, weakness and brittleness in our limbs…” When they brought their condition to the attention of God’s Messenger صلى الله عليه و سلم, he said: “You should seek the camel herd of sadaqa (charity) and drink from its urine and milk.” Accordingly, and following known medical treatment then, they recovered from their illness. However, the later killed the shepherd, drove away the camel herd and fought against Allah and His Messenger صلى الله عليه و سلم. This tradition is also narrated in sahïh Bukhãri.

Dropsy is a disease which is caused by a foreign cold virus that manifests abnormality in either externally visible signs or internal symptoms. This illness develops through accumulation of fluid in the cells, tissues or cavities in the body where food and gastric juices are mixed, resulting in abdominal swelling. There are three kinds of dropsy: (1) skin dropsy (conjunctive) affecting the tissues, and that is the most serious; (2) abdominal dropsy (edema) which can also affect the liver; and (3) tympanitic dropsy, causing distention of the abdomen by the accumulation of gas or air in the intestines or peritonial cavity.

Diuretics and laxatives are the most approved remedy for dropsy. They provide the body with gentle bowel movement and regular discharge of urine as needed. Such medicinal properties are also found in she-camels’ urine and milk at the time of their estrous cycle. In fact, during estrus, she-camels’ milk becomes whey-like, serous, or thin, clear and watery, and its whey becomes a natural antitoxin for the disease. For this reason, God’s Messenger صلى الله عليه و سلم recommended such remedy, for such quality of milk provides the needed detergent, mild laxative, proper urine discharge, and regularity of bowel movement. The effect of this medicine is stronger when the camels’ herd is feeding on the strong-smelling wormwood plant (genus artemisia), or the Eurasian perennial kind of absinthe (artemisia absinthium) which produces a dark-green and bitter oil, bog-rush, ground-cyprus, southern wood (artemisia abrotanum), gold wormwood (artemisia camphorata), Artemisia sauve (F), scenanth (andropogon schœnanthus), spikenard (nardostachys jatamanis) of the ginseng family, which carries whitish and sometimes yellowish flowers and has fragrant roots, or camel’s hay as fodder, among other natural remedies for dropsy.

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