Dalak (Massage) in Unani Medicine: A Review

Kamal Ahmed, Najeeb Jahan, Mohd Aslam, Heena Kausar S., Mohd Khalid, Hamid Ali


Regimental therapies are mostly non medicinal procedures for health promotion in Unani system of medicine. Several regimens have been used by Unani physicians since ancient time, among which Dalak (massage) is the most common and widely practiced regimen that is used for restorative, preventive as well as for therapeutic purposes. Massage which has been used in almost all the civilizations in the history, evidence of this is present in several manuscripts. According to Hippocrates (460 BC–370 BC), the father of medicine, massage, balanced diet, exercise, rest and fresh air are essential to maintain health of a person. According to Ibne Rushd, massage is a type of exercise used for removal of toxins or waste metabolites from the body. In Unani medicine, Dalak is one of the very important regimes among the procedures of Ilaj Bil-Tadbeer (Regimental therapy) for neurological and musculoskeletal disorders. A number of Unani physicians recommended Dalak as preventive as well as curative measure. Historical background of Dalak, timing, duration, its types and importance, mechanism of action, recent scientific reports and the disorders in which massage can be used have been discussed in this paper.


Dalak; Massage; Unani Medicine; Musculoskeletal; Neurological Disorders

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