Botanical Name: Aconitum Heterophyllum
Sanskrit Name: Ativisa
Common Name: Indian Atees
Family Name: Ranunculaceae
English: Indian Atees
Gujarati: Ativakhani Kali
Sanskirit : Aruna, Ardra, Upavisa, Kasaya, Krsna, Ghunavallabha, Candri, Visva, Visama, Sisubhaisajya, Sukakanda, Suklakanda, Sringika, Syamakanda, Svetakanda, Svedavaca, Laksha, Bhangura, Madri, Mrdvi, Mahausadha, Pithavallabha, Rakta, Madhya-Desastha.
Aruna, Ardra, Upavisa, Kasaya, Krsna, Ghuna vallabha, Candri, Pita Vallabha, Prati Visa, Bhangura, Madhya-desastha, Mahausadha, Madri, Mrdvi, Rakta Visva, Visama, Visa, Shishu bhaishajya, Suka kanda, Shukla kanda, Shringee, Syama Kanda, Sveta, Sveta Kanda, Sveta Vaca, Ativisa and Laksa.
Word Meaning Of the Synonyms:
Aruna- A variety having reddish coloured stem
Krsna- Its black variety is called krsna due to its black colour
Ghuna Vallabha- Modified stems are relishing to insects
Prativisa- It is an antidote to many poisons
Bhangura- Roots or stems are brittle
Mahaushadha- It is an important drug in materia medica
Visva- It spreads to every part of the body due to its sukshma guna
Shishubhaishajya- Useful in paediatric diseases
Shukla kanda- Main stems having white colour
Shringee- Modified stems appear like horn
Suka Kanda- Due to the fragile nature the stem is easily breakable
Ativisa- Even though it occurs under visha varga it is non-poisonous
Kashmira- Grows mainly in the region of Kashmir
Sodhala: Sukla, Krsna, Aruna
Nighantu: Raktha, Swetha, Krisna, Pita
INDUKARA- In his context describes visa and ativisa as dvaya The herb “Visa” is delineated in sathapatha brhamana, Sayana considered this plant as “Vyapina”
Acharya P.V.SHARMA compared it to a variety of BANAPARANI however SAYANAS version on the synonyms of visa (ie) visakakiindicates that visa and ativisa are one and the same.
CHARAKA-denotes this plants only with the name “ativisa”, he also explains as “prativisa” twice in his text in Charaka Samhitha-Chikitsa Sthana.
SUSRUTHA-also quoted it as ‘ativisa” and “prativisa” term is used in the context of ativisa in Susruta Samhitha-Uttara Sthana.
VAGBHATA-There must be two varieties (ie) “Aitvisa and Prativisa”. It is clear from the fact that Vagbhata mention about Visadvaya in Ashtanga Hridaya-Uttara Sthana.
Vagbhata for the first time quoted the term Ghunesta in Ashtanga Hridaya-Chikitsa Sthana , Ghunapriya in Ashtanga Hridaya-Sutra Sthana to denote ativisa.
Charka Samhita: Lekhaniya, Arshoghna, Titktaskandha, Sirovirecana
Susruta Samhita: Pippalyadi, Mustadi, Vacadi
Astanga Sangraha: Lekaniya, Arshoghna, Vacadi, Mustadi, Pippalyadi
Astanga Hridaya: Pippalyadi, Mustadi, Vacadi
Dhanvantari Nighantu: Guducyadi Varga
Sodhala Nighantu: Guducyadi Varga, Anekarthavarga
Kaiyadeva Nighantu: Oushadi Varga
Bhavaprakasha Nighantu: Haritakyadi Varga
Raja Nighantu: Pippalyadi Varga, Upavisa gana
Generally plants of this family are annuals or perennials herbs or rarely shrubs
Leaves : Radical or alternate, rarely opposite
Flowers : Bisexual or unisexual, regular or irregular
Sepals : Five or more, rarely fewer or very rarely persistent, often petoloid, imbricate or rarely valvate.
Petals : Five or more or zero, rarely four or three, hypogynous, imbricate, often minute.
Stamens : Hypogynous usually numerous in many rows
Anthers : Adnate, opening laterally
Carpel’s : Numerous, rarely free
Stigma : Simple
Ovules: Numerous or solitary on ventral suture
Fruits: One seeded beaked or plumose, achenes or many seeded follicles or rarely capsules or berry
Ativisa is a native of the Western Himalayas and it is found in Gurhwal, Kumaon and Kashmir. Also is Sub- Alphine and Alphine zone in the temperate zone of about 2500-3900 meters.
An erect, perennial and tuberous herb, glabrous. Stem erect, simple or branched from 15- 19cm. High glabrous below, finely crispo-pubescent in the upper part, lowest 2-4 internodes short.
Leaves: Heteromorphous, glabrous, lowest on long petiole (13cms) blade-orbicular cordate or ovate in outline with usually narrow sinus 1-1.5cm deep, lobes usually five lobed to the middle. Lobes crenate or incisocrenate, crenate, rotundate, apiculate, intermediate leaves shortly petioled or sessile.
Inflorescence: Slender receme or a lax, leafy panicle, crispo pubescent, sepals bluish or violet rarely white, upper sepals almost navicular obiliquely erect shortly or obscurely beaked 18-20mm high, 8-9mm wide, carpels 5 elliptic, oblong.
Follicles: Contagious, linear-oblong, straight 16-18mm long
Seeds: Obpyrandial 3-4mm long blackish brown
Roots: Paired biennials, tuberous, whitish or grey 2.8cm long, and 0.4-1.5 cm thick grey brown outside with scattered pointed minute notches. Starchy white inside 4-9 xylem bundles near the periphery embedded in the secondary phloem tissue.
Flowering and Fruiting: Rainy autumn season onwards, July to September. Fruits have two sections one from previous year and one from the current year.
Roots contain non toxic amorphous alkaloids and it is one of the best bitter tonics for children
Alkaloid atisine, Aconitic acid, Tannic acid, Palmitic acid, Stearic acid
Abundant starch, fat, vegetable mucilage, cane sugar, glycerides and Ash
Atisinol, Heterophyllisine, Entatisine dipterpenoid lactone, F-dishydroatisine, Benzylleteratisine, Hetisine, Hetratisine, Hetidine, Atinide, Hestinone, Carotene, Diterpene alkaloid
Four Diterpenes viz., Heterophyllisine, Hetidine, Atidine, Hetisinone, Atisine
Rasa: Katu, Tikta
Guna: Laghu, Ruksha
Karma: Dipanam, Pacana, Grahi, Sotha Hara, Visaghna, Krimihara, Arshoghna, Jwarahara, Kasa hara
Dosakarma: Tri doshahara
PARTS USED: The tuberous root is medicinally used both alone and in combination
Root powder 1-3gm/day (divided dose)
Solid extract as tonic 65-195mg in terms of 2% alkaloid
Solid extract as anthelminthic 49-65mg in terms of 2% alkaloid
Solid extract as antiperiodic 260-390mg in terms of 2% alkaloid
Over dosage (more than 5-6gm) produces symptoms like dryness of mouth, tremors etc
Drugs which are vata hara in nature may be useful under these conditions
Roots of Ativisa are cut into pieces and tied in a cloth. Then it is soaked in cow’s urine for three days by changing cow’s urine every day. Afterwards the pieces are shade dried.
Antidote for poison:
The dasanga agada formulated by KASYAPA cures the poison of all kinds of insects
Ghee prepared with Ativisa and cow’s milk is orally administered or as a nasal drops in case of acute poisoning.
Ativisa is made into paste by grinding with honey and administered orally
Digestive System: It has appetizing, digestive, astringent, antihaemorrhoidal, and antihelmentic due to its bitter, pungent and ushna properties. Useful in diarrhea and dysentery.
Circulatory System: It is a blood purifier, haemostatic and anti-inflammatory because it alleviates pitta.
Respiratory System: It reduces phlegm and clears airways.
Reproductive System: Purifies milk secretion because of its katu property. Aphrodisiacs due to usna property.
Temperature: Febrifuge, useful as a prophylactic in intermittent fever
Satmikarana: Reduces body weight due to ruksha guna, bitter tonic and antidote for poisons, useful in scorpion bite.
DOSA: Diseases induced by all three dhosas but mainly useful in diseases due to kapha and pitta.
Digestive System: Useful in dyspepsia, indigestion, amadosa, vomiting, fever associated with diarrhea, Haemorrhoids, helminthiasis.
Respiratory System: Useful in cold and cough
Reproductive System: Useful in impotency
Temperature: Effective in fever mainly periodical fever. It should be given in the dose of 2-3gm as prophylactic treatment for malaria and act faster if given along with any fragrant drug
Satmikaran: Useful in post pyrexia debility because it is a bitter tonic. It is an antidote for rat poison.
Specific Uses: No medicine is better than Aconitum heterophyllum for pediatric diseases.
Indicated diseases: Atisara, Jwara, Kasa, Bala roga, Visa roga, Ama dosa, Chardi, Krimi roga, Agnimandya, Raktha pitta, Yakrit roga, Trsna, Pinasa, Arsa, Pittodara.