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Glossary Unani

Unani System of Medicine Terms and Terminology 

Tasreeh ul badan
The study of human body structures. It deals with brief description of all systems of the body, anatomical position and related terminologies, osteology, mycology, arthrology. This is commonly termed as Anatomy.[1]

Munafe ul aaza
The study of functioning of human body structures. This is commonly termed as Physiology.[1]

Umoor –e- tabiya
The fundamentals of Unani medicine. Principles of Unani Medicine.[1]

Ilmul advia
The study of Pharmacology of Unani medicines. It deals with the therapeutic effects of herbs, minerals and animal origin drug substances.[1]

Ilmul amraz and sareeryat
The study of Pathology & Principles of diagnosis and treatment.[1]

Ilmul Samoom & tibb qanooni    
The study of Forensic Medicine, Jurisprudence & Toxicology.[1]

Hifzane sehat tahaffuzi wa samaji tib
The study of Hygiene, Preventive and Social Medicine. This subject deals with the detailed study on community health, public health, science of sanitation and hygiene. Social epidemiology and disease transmission. Disposal of human refuse and excreta.[1]

The study of practice of Unani medicine based on the Unani medicine principles and philosophy.[1]

Basic modern surgery, which includes, trauma management, head and neck surgery, abdominal surgery and foreign body removal techniques.[1]

Amraz e ain, uzn, anaf. Halaq
The study of Opthalmology dealing with diagnosis of eye diseases and their management, eye sight correction proceedures with refractionometry and refractometry. Ear,Nose and Throat (ENT) deals with the study of the diseases and management of ENT problems.[1]

Ilmul qabalat, niswan wa atfal
The study of Obstetrics, Gynecology & Pediatrics. This subject deals with the study of pregnancy, labor and birthing as per the Unani system of medicine.[1]

Unani herbal substance which is corrosive. For example latex of Cactus plant.[1]

Unani herbal extracts which are used for cleansing. This has a detergent and cleansing quality.[1]

Habis suddam
A Unani drug which produces haemostatic effect.[1]

Dafa –e-humma
A Unani drug to control fever. Anti-Pyretic.[1]

A Unani drug which can induce urination. Diuretic.[1]

A Unani drug which is laxative and help in increasing the bowel moments. Purgative.[1]

A Unani drug which can induce Sweating. Diaphoretic.[1]

A combination of Unani drugs used for general weakness. General Tonic.[1]

A special type of invasive therapy in which vacuum suction cups are used commonly referred as Cupping therapy.[1]

It is a form of biotherapy where live leeches are used for sucking the blood out from the body, commonly referred as Leech therapy.[1]

Physical manipulation of external tissues based on the Unani medicine principles. Massage.[1]

Pulse. Reading of pulse is done in Unani system for diagnosis purpose.[1]

Urine. Physical examination of urine is done in Unani system of medicine for disease diagnosis.[1]

Stool. Physical examination of stool is done in Unani system of medicine for disease diagnosis.[1]

Unani System Techniques

The Unani techniques in disease diagnosis and treatment are very unique.

Diagnostic Techniques

  1. Nabz: Nabz means pulse. This particular technique involves examination of Pulse.
  2. Baul: It is the physical examination of Urine.
  3. Baraz: It is the physical examination of stools.

Treatment Techniques

1.     Ilaj bil tadbeer:

Regimental Therapy. It means a planned therapy. The following are the different types of Regimental therapy:

  • Riyazat:Exercise
  • Dalak: Massage
  • Takmeed: Fomentation
  • Nutool: Pouring of medicated lukewarm water or oil on affected part.
  • Zimaad wa tila: Ointment and Liniment
  • Tareeq: Sweating
  • Idrar-e-baul: Diuresis
  • Hammam: Bath
  • Ishaal: Purgation
  • Qai: Emesis
  • Huqna: Enema
  • Imala: Diversion of morbid material
  • Hijamah: Cupping
  • Fasd: Venous section
  • Taleeq: Leeching
  • Kai: Cauterization

2.     Ilaj bil ghiza: Diet therapy

3.     Ilaj gil dava: Treatment through herbal medicine and minerals. Pharmacotherapy

4.     Ilaj bil yad: Surgery [2]

Unani Equipments

1. Mortars

Mortar is a tool used to crush and grind dry herbs and herbal medicines. Mortars are the most essential part of any Unani pharmacy, Unani clinic and Unani dispensary.[3]


Black granite mortar used to grind hard seeds like Nux Vomica.


Sand stone mortar used for dried herbs and fruits like Capsicum.


Anemone granite mortar used for grinding Chemicals like Alum.


Red marble mortar used for grinding of small seeds like basil.

White_marble_mortar_White marble mortar used for making paste out of herbs.

Balmoral_granite_mortar_Balmoral granite mortar used for grinding aromatic spices like Cardamom.

Bheslana_Granite_mortar_Bheslana Granite mortar used for fine grinding of minerals like rocksalt.

Slate_stone_mortar_Slate stone mortar used for oily herbs like Mentha (Mint)


Agra sandstone mortar  used for bitter herbs like colocynth



Emerald granite mortar used for grinding resins and gums like Acacia Arabica.


Jade mortar used for grinding tough barks like Wrightis Tinctoria.

 Tiger black granite mortar used for grinding cereals and  spices.

Source: Niamath Research foundation.


2. Turkish Baths / Steam baths  

The Steam baths which are known as Turkish baths are meant for diaphoretic (sweating) purposes.[3]


Source: Niamath Research foundation.


3. Cupping therapy cups

Cupping therapy is one of the important regimental therapies in Unani system of Medicine. There are different types of cups are used in cupping therapy.[4]



Plastic manual suction cupping therapy sets


Ceramic cupping therapy set


Bamboo cupping therapy set.



Clay cupping therapy set

Source: Niamath Research foundation.

The following are the uses for different cupping sets:

  1. Plastic manual suction cupping therapy sets: These type of cups are used for dry cupping (without blood letting), also used for cupping massage.
  2. Ceramic cupping therapy set: These type of cups are used for wet cupping (blood letting).
  3. Bamboo cupping therapy set: These type of cups are used for back ache (dry cupping)
  4. Clay cupping therapy set: These type of cups are used for both wet and dry cupping.

4. Massage tables[5]

massage_table_1 massage_table_2

Source: Niamath Research foundation.


5. Massage wheels[6]



6. Unani Sauna for Sinusitis[7] 


Source: Niamath Research foundation.


7. Head Leather cap for Oil Therapy


This oil therapy consists of cap made from sheep leather which is exclusively used for stroke patients.[8]


Source: Niamath Research foundation.

Method and its uses:

The cap at the lower end has a seal which fits on the forehead of the patient; this seal prevents the leakage of oil from the cap. A luke warm herbal infused olive oil or safflower oil is used. The cap will be filled with the oil so as it surfaces above the scalp. This is repeated twice daily for an acute case of stroke.


8. Hot Oil Dispenser for Oil therapy 

 This oil dispenser is used in oil therapy for stroke patients and in beauty therapy.[9]


Source: Niamath Research foundation.


9. Distillation Unit

The distillation unit is the most integral part of Unani system of medicine. It is used to extract the volatile oils and essential oils from fresh and dried herbs.[10]


Copper distillation unit used for aromatic herbs and floral distillation.


Portable cop copper distillation unit used for spices distillation.


Herb essence distillation unit used for distilling essence of herbs like Basil


Latest herbal distillation unit.

Unani System Treatment Protocols for Varying Diseases

1. Arthritis

The following are the treatment protocols for Arthritis [11]:

  • Light purgation is done initially.
  • Patient is restricted from heavy movements and exercises.
  • If the weather is cold, patient is advised to take considerate care by wearing warm clothes.
  • Medicated olive oil infused with herb extracts is applied on the joints and a very light massage is given.
  • Turkish steam bath is given every alternate day for 2 weeks.
  • Ointments prepared purely by extracts of herbs and bee wax is applied as external analgesic. Twice a day for 15 days.
  • For 15 days Unani Compound medicines are given internally.
  • Leeches are applied on the effected joints. Leech therapy is performed weekly once for a period of 4 weeks.
  • Diet is very light which comprises of Barley and lots of buttermilk.
  • Red meat and sea food is strictly restricted.

2. Influenza

The following are the treatment protocols for Influenza [12]:

  • High calorific, high fiber foods are given.
  • Honey with decoction of various herbs and herb roots are given initially.
  • The treatment begins on the 3rd day of the onset of the disease.
  • Unani Sauna is given with medicated fumes of extracts of Menthol, Thymol & Camphor.
  • Herbal syrup is given on the 3rd day of onset of disease for 3 times daily for a period of 11 days.
  • Unani Compound medicines in the form of pills or Jelly are given, 3 times a day for 11 days.
  • The patient is advised to rinse the nose every 30 minutes with fresh tap water.
  • Medicated oil is applied on the fore head & chest before sleep.
  • On the 11th day light purgation is given with the help of herbal Laxatives.
  • Light exercises are advised during treatment.

3. Paralysis / Stroke

The following are the treatment protocols for Paralysis/ Stroke [13]:

  • Initially honey diluted with water is given for a period of seven days along with barley.
  • After 3 days purgation is induced by the help of decoction of roots from different Unani herbs.
  • No solid food is given for the first seven days.
  • Enema is given on the seventh day.
  • Internally Unani compound medicines are given starting from the seventh day.
  • Externally Oil therapy is given. Olive oil combined with infusion of various fresh and dried Unani herbs is applied all over the effected parts.
  • Special head massage and pouring of medicated oil is done.
  • Special leather cap is used for Oil therapy.
  • Massage and physiotherapy is performed from the seventh day onwards.
  • Whole meal wheat bread along with chicken or Quail soup is given from the seventh day onwards. Low salt diet is given.
  • Fresh vegetables Juice is given from the seventh day onwards.
  • Red meat is strictly restricted.
  • Patient is provided with noise free atmosphere.

4. Piles

The following are the treatment protocols for Influenza [14]:

  • Initially patient is relieved from constipation if present. Light laxatives are given followed by strong purgatives.
  • Patient is restricted for all heavy food. Light diet of buttermilk with rice is advised.
  • Patient is subjected to sit in bath tub with medicated water infused with herb extracts for several minutes every day for a period of 7 days.
  • If the piles are external, herbal ointment is applied on the hemorrhoids.
  • Internally Unani Pills and Unani herbal decoctions are given for a period of 7 days.
  • If the piles are post natal the patients are given a special whole body massage with rape seed oil.
  • Light exercises are advised.

5. Renal calculi

The following are the treatment protocols for renal calculi [15]:

  • Emesis is induced on the first day of treatment.
  • Light purgation is done following the Emesis.
  • Diuresis is induced on the second day of treatment with Unani herbal diuretics.
  • Soup of chicken and lamb is given in the food along with bread made up of whole meal Barley.
  • Light exercises are given.
  • If patient is also suffering from constipation, herbal laxatives are given.
  • Cucurbits are given as food and drinks.
  • Venous section is done on the left or right leg depending upon the pain radiation.
  • Medicated herbal bath tub is given, in which patient is allowed to sit in for several minutes.
  • Externally herbal ointments are applied.
  • Hot Fomentation is done periodically on the effected areas.
  • Lots of Luke warm natural mineral water is given at regular intervals.
  • Medicated Oil infused with herbal extract is poured on the effected areas.


  1. Hakim Mohammed Kabiruddin. Mamoolat Matab,Bayaz e kabir. Vol.1,2 & 3. Fifth Edition Hyderabad India. Hikmat Book Depot.1961. PP 312-319.(Vol 1). PP 180-200. (Vol 2). PP 136-146. (Vol 3).
  2. Hakim Mohammed Kabiruddin, Sharah e Asbaab. New Delhi India. Aijaz Publishing House.1970
  3. Niamath Research Foundation. S.K's Herbal Medical Hospital & Research Centre. Available from: [Accessed 25th March 2010].
  4. Cupping Therapy Org. Cupping Tools. Available from: [Accessed 25th March 2010]
  5. Ayurvedic Equipments Suppliers. Dhroni Massaging Tables. Available from: [Accessed 25th April 2010]
  6. Ayurveda Pura. Ayurveda pura products. Available from: [Accessed 25th April 2010]
  7. Hakim Mohammed Kabiruddin, Sharah e Asbaab . New Delhi India. Aijaz Publishing House.1970.
  8. Ayur craft. Ayurvedic Equipments. Available from: [Accessed 25th April 2010]
  9. Ayurveda Pura. Ayurveda pura products. Available from: [Accessed 25th April 2010]
  10. Hakim Mohammed Kabiruddin. Taqteer, Bayaz e kabir.Vol 3 Fifth Edition. Hyderabad India. Hikmat Book Depot.1961.PP  29-35.
  11. Hakim Mohammed Kabiruddin. Amraz e Mafasil, Ghatia. Bayaz e kabir. Vol.1 Fifth Edition Hyderabad India. Hikmat Book Depot.1961. PP 229-232.
  12. Hakim Mohammed Kabiruddin. Anaf-ul-Anza, Bayaz e kabir-.Vol.1 Fifth Edition. Hyderabad India. Hikmat Book Depot.1961.PP 17.
  13. Hakim Mohammed Kabiruddin. Falij wa Laqwa.Bayaz e kabir. Vol.1 Fifth Edition .Hyderabad India. Hikmat Book Depot.1961. PP 29-30.
  14. Hakim Mohammed Kabiruddin. Bawaseer, Bayaz e kabir. Vol. 1 Fifth Edition. Hyderabad India. Hikmat Book Depot.1961.PP 161.
  15. Hakim Mohammed Kabiruddin. Amraaz e Kuliya.Bayaz e kabir. Vol.1 Fifth Edition. Hyderabad India. Hikmat Book Depot.1961. PP 169-170.