External Bastis is a procedure in which oil is used to treat the diseases and pain in areas like the neck, back, joints, etc. It helps to maintain the health of the patient by:

  • Improving blood circulation
  • Building strong muscles 
  • Build healthy connective tissues
  • Reducing pain and
  • Lubricating the joints.

Patient Selection for external bastis is made on the following basis: 

Age limit: minimum required age for a patient receiving external Basti therapy is 15 years old. This is to ensure that the patient could follow instructions, primarily to lie still for a while.

General physical & mental status of the patient:

  • Clinically stable (typical vital signs, no acute illness);
  • Not bedridden;
  • Able to understand and follow instructions properly; and
  • Not intellectually challenged. 

Contraindications for external bastis

  • Fever
  • Pregnancy
  • Acute Sinusitis
  • Acute alcohol intoxication
  • Alcohol withdrawal syndrome
  • Central or peripheral neuropathy

Types of Oil used in external Basti therapy:

  • For each treatment procedure, about 150-200ml or more of oil can be used. 
  • The oil should meet the standards of Good Manufacturing Practices (GMP) 
  • It should be registered with the National Pharmaceutical Control Bureau (NPCB).
  • Types of oil that can be used for Kati Basti, Greeva Basti, and Janu Basti are mainly of herbal processed sesame oil.

Concept of holding oil to the diseased part

  • Firstly To activate the tissues and prepare the body, a massage is performed over the target site. This invites the Basti to do its work.
  • Over the targeted site, medicated & analgesic oil is “held” by a well (made from flour).
  • Oil is maintained at a suitably hot temperature, and the herbs present in oil penetrates all layers of skin, deep into muscle tissues, bone, bone marrow, and nerves.
  • Muscles that are Stiff and tight in nature will instantly be lubricated and softened. Problems of many tissues are solved like: Nerve Pain, Slipped Discs, Sciatica, Back Pain.

Different types of External Bastis

Kati Basti (Lower back) 

This is an effective treatment for conditions like:

  • Lower and upper back, neck pain and Slipped discs
  • Herniated discs & Sciatica
  • Sports injuries & Stiff neck
  • Helps repair nerve damage and heals ligaments
  • Relieves sprain and muscular spasm
  • Nourishes the vertebral discs 
  • Kati Basti has some unique features like:
  • It is a non-intrusive and passive treatment
  • Restores spine alignment
  • Deep tissue therapy for elimination of pain
  • Medicated oil helps to reduce toxins, acts as an anti-inflammatory and restore the cellular memory of the muscle tissue
  • The healing process is increased by increased blood flow to the area.
  • Strengthens and distresses the body

Frequency of Kati Basti depends on the individual for acute cases 1 or 2 visits is sufficient for the relief; for more chronic cases treatments every 10 days, it is required depending on the individual.

Aftercare for treatment includes:

  • Avoid heavy lifting
  • Avoid excessive exercise for 24 hours
  • Follow home recommendations provided by the therapist
  • Leave the oil for 1 hour

Greeva Basti (Neck)

Greeva Basti is the treatment of neck pain and related ailments of the neck. This procedure includes oleation and sudation. It solves the problems related to the muscles, spines, and skeletal tissues.

Indications of Greeva Basti are:

  • Disk prolapse
  • Whiplash
  • Sprains and strains
  • Chronic pain in the neck
  • Tension headaches and migraines
  • Torticollis (Wryneck)

·Procedure of Greeva Basti includes following steps:

  • The patient lies on the massage table facing downwards.
  • A dough-ring is securely placed over the cervical region of the neck, including 2-3 thoracic vertebrae. The dough ring should be leaked proof and made up of wheat or gram flour.
  • Medicated oil, which is heated, is slowly poured into the dough-ring.To maintain a warm temperature; the oil is recycled throughout the procedure for 15 mins.

Benefits of Greeva Basti:

  • Calms and nourishes the nerves, bones, and muscle tissue.
  • Relieves pain and discomfort.
  • Stimulates nerves and blood supply.
  • Improves flexibility 
  • Enhances ease of movement

Oils and Ghee recommended for Greeva Basti:

  • Ksheerabala tailam
  • Mahamasha tailam
  • Kottamchukkadi tailam
  • Balashwaghandhadi tailam
  • Ashwaghandabalalakshadi tailam
  • Sahacharadi tailam
  • Murivenna

Jaanu Basti (Knee)

It is helpful for conditions of knee replacements, torn tendons & ligaments, excess fluid, arthritis, etc. In this, the knee joint treated with freshly prepared herbal decoction or warm medicated oil. 

Treatment Method:

  • The person lies on the massage table on his back.
  • The dough ring covered the knee joint and made of black gram dough. The ring should be leak-proof.
  • Herbal decoction or lukewarm medicated oil is slowly poured into the ring. Oil is squeezed out with cotton gauze when it is cooled down, and the procedure is repeated.
  • The affected area may be gently massaged after completion of the process. The ring is removed, and the person takes rest for a short while.
  • The time required for treatment is 30 minutes.

There are certain benefits of Janu Basti treatment like:

  • Pacifies Vata dosha in the knee
  • Restores the lubricating fluid and maintain the structures of the joint.
  • Eliminates stiffness and pain in Knee joint
  • Protects age-related changes in knee joint
  • Increases blood circulation 
  • Mobility is improved of the knee joints 
  • It is indicated in the following conditions:
  • Osteoarthritis of knee joints
  • Osteoporosis
  • Arthrosis of knee joints
  • Chronic pain of the knee joint

Hridya Basti (Heart) 

It means Hri: that receives or withholds, Da: to give or returns and Ya: to the organs.

Holding of the medicated oil over the hridya (cardiac region) is known as hridya Basti.

Occult outcomes of hridya Basti are as follows:

  • The strength of the heart is increased.
  • Useful for respiratory problems.
  • Best for heart treatment. 
  • Useful in muscular pains of the thoracic region.
  • Help in the maintenance of muscles and connective tissues.
  • Improves the function of the heart, i.e., commence rejuvenation of the soul.
  • Therapeutic Indication of hridya Basti
  • Coronary heart diseases
  • Angina
  • Bronchitis
  • Ischemic heart diseases
  • Cardiomyopathy
  • Asthma and other respiratory disorders
  • Palpitations
  • High or low blood pressure
  • Durations: Treatment varies from 7-14 days. It depends on the nature and intensity of the disease. The period of per session is 40-60 minutes.

Nabhi Basti (Abdominal)

  • Digestion Improvement & Emotional Release
  • It helps balance the Nabhi Marma. The treatment is done by gentle tummy oil with special herbal oil. 
  • Well is made by filling a dough batter and placing it on the navel. The lukewarm medicinal oil or ghee is filled in well.
  • To improve digestion, a warm steam towel is used.

Benefits of Nabhi Basti:

  • Strengthens the power of digestion 
  • Absorption is improved 
  • Facilitates the release of deep-seated emotions.
  • Eliminates digestive problems such as irritable bowel, flatulence, loss of appetite, constipation and abdominal discomfort
  • Duration: 30 minutes

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