BEWARE OF CAMPHOR PUDIYAS!- A real life experience..

When I took the round of my ward at 12.30 am he was maintaining spo2 of 95 percent on 12 litre Oxygen supply through NRBM mask so I was quite shocked when sister suddenly came running to inform me at 1.30 AM that this patient X was having severe coughing. I was on the other side of the ward trying to explain another old man to wear his Oxygen mask snugly.

I immediately rushed to the scene and checked his oxygen saturation. It was 65 percent. He had removed his mask and was snorting on some pudiyas which strongly smelt of camphor and cinnamon. They were sent to him by his caring family members in a tiny little tiffin box.

And our hero was snorting these pudiyas with much glee, keeping his NRBM mask comfortably on the bed till he started to cough loudly and helplessly. The ward sister on duty and I helped to get him in prone position and had to increase the oxygen flow to 15 liters per minute instead of the original 12 he was on an hour ago. Finally after 15-20 minutes he started maintaining 85-86 per cent spo2 and it was slowly coming back to normal.

Unfortunately, I am sure some damage must have additionally occurred to his already affected lungs in the half an hour or so that he had removed the mask and was snorting these camphor pudiyas.
I don’t blame the poor guy or his family. Out of their ignorance and concern for the patient they wanted to try this method out but it failed remarkably and could have lost him his life if our ward sister hadn’t noticed this on time!

The real culprits are those Whatsapp university educated fools who keep forwarding such illogical, unscientific advices on Whatsapp groups.

Remember this fact – When your oxygen saturation is down, you need oxygen. Camphor or Ajwain or Tulsi or any jadibutti for that matter doesn’t provide you oxygen! I wish it did! We wouldn’t have run short of oxygen then! Please keep such things out of reach of patients. They are not a substitute to oxygen! And please don’t forward such messages.
Also if you see see such messages floating around tell them this story instead so that they understand that their one illogical forwarded message can lead to loss of someone’s life! That’s the last thing we want in this pandemic!

Stop being stupid or else stupidity will kill you before the virus does!
Don’t burden the already crippled health system with such misadventures. We are not equipped to fight the pandemic of misinformation for it spreads much faster than the virus itself!

P.S. This post is not meant to ridicule or demean any alternative forms of treatment but trust me if you still believe that camphor and Ajwain increases oxygen levels in a patient of COVID19, I am sorry I can’t help but call you a moron and just pray that sanity returns to you soon!

Janhit me jaari.
Stay safe.
Don’t go out unless absolutely necessary.
Wear masks.
Practice social distancing.
Take vaccine when your turn comes. Take care.


  1. Sometimes itโ€™s frustrating explaining people that there is no alternative toh oxygen therapy. They blindly follow the desi nuskhas without thinking about the side effects.
    It has now become doctorโ€™s responsibility to advice what not to do and what to strictly follow.
    Hope there was a way to guard people against WhatsApp forward.

    Liked by 1 person

      • Who said Camphor increases oxygen level?? The gentleman or family members must’ve misunderstood. Camphor oil is a time-tested remedy for treating respiratory woes like nasal congestion, clearing phlegm, cough and cold. Simply inhaling the fragrance of camphor can clear the mucus and phlegm in the nasal tract, bronchi and lungs. Camphor oil is a key element in vaporizing rubs owing to its strong decongestant properties. Must’ve given to clear the passage and not to increase oxygen level ๐Ÿ™‚


  2. Very rational. Discussion one has to know the. Demarcation where. to stop family treatment and where to hand. Our self completely to allopathic doctor..Do not believe 100. On. WhatsapAparna sant

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Yesnow a days such things happen due to exc essive use of of what’s app and the of u tube ,by this I’m ,not against any pathy they are right on their part but being a mbbs and dph was very much opened to public health and were exposed to various endemic and its severity and I know the load water a doctor has to face when such ignorance runs out in common people by the pretty suggestions given by their beloved relatives which are life alarming.

    Liked by 1 person

    • My neighbour’s family had COVID19. They used to sing Himesh Reshammiya’s songs everyday as its a good exercise for the nose. They all recovered completely with no drop in oxygen saturation. Just because nothing bad happened doesn’t mean I will propagate this and forward to all that singing Himesh’s songs helps maintain oxygen saturation! What nonsense!
      Understand why this post was made in the first place.
      At home, everything works – be it Himesh’s song or camphor pudiyas but when you are in hospital and needing such a high level of oxygen, you are doomed if you remove the oxygen mask and keep smelling these camphor.


    • As far as I know, camphor indirectly helps in breathing by clearing up the nasal path that gets closed due to cold or anything else.

      From my experience I can say that the smell of the camphor forces the nasal path to clear up just like we would apply vicks vaporub. Please understand, sir that oxygen dropping fast in case OF COVID19 is not because of congestion! COVID19 newer strains are directly affecting the lungs!


  4. Many people I know have been benefited by camphor and ajvayan without knowing fully one should not pass negative remarks instead try to know how to use the things properly


    • As far as I know, camphor indirectly helps in breathing by clearing up the nasal path that gets closed due to cold or anything else.

      Yes you can say that the smell of the camphor forces the nasal path to clear up just like we would apply
      But the oxygen saturation dropping suddenly in COVID19 is not due to Nasal congestion!! It directly affects the lungs!


  5. This is the best international market of foolish advices, and people have so deep faith in all these things that without knowing the facts of such judibutti, everyone becomes a specialist to provide another remidies one after another.and the result is blind faith has to suffer ultimately.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. I too used camphor when my oxygen level fell below 80. I am Covid19 +ve with diaria and high fever as main symptoms. In 6th day Idue to sever dairia and 2vomitings, I become unconscious and fell down. My daughter checked my SpO2 it was below 80. Before this incident it was always 98. Then my wife continued smelling me camphor pudiya. From 2AM to 7.00 AM, till I got admitted in Hospital, I was on it and whenever SpO2 level falls below 95. There was no availability of Oxygen Ambulance during this period. It saved my life and after that I donot require Oxygen support.


  7. Good article…

    I’d like to add my 2 cents if that’s ok.

    Like with Allopathy, alternative medicines too have to be used in a particular way and time and dose.

    It’s not that these remedies are bad. It’s just that the messages that circulate don’t give you the proper details.

    Even oxygen, if given wrongly, can be detrimental and cause alevolar damage, right?!

    So what’s important is to tell people that these things MAY help, but only in certain cases and in early stages.

    Camohor, eucalyptus oil etc are known to relieve chest congestion. So if low oxygen levels are due to this, it might help. But if the low levels are due to pulmonary Embolism, these remedies will most likely not help.

    I suspect the same is the case with oxygen. Giving oxygen to a person with PE would not be of much use if not supported by thrombolytics, blood thinners etc.

    Moral of my comment: Each and every teatment/remedy has its time and place whether allopathic, ayurvedic, homeopathic, naturopathic.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. From the comments it’s clear that it worked for some. The main culprit could be chemical based camphor which is in use now. The Bhimseni ( purest form of Camphor) costs around 1800 per kg. The cost may not matter to all but they are unaware of the fact. Easiest way to check is that the cubes should get crushed between fingers easily. There are homeaopathic and ayurvedic medicines available but they are not being considered as an option oficially else the scenario could be diff. One of my relatives was given 17 different Allopathic pills to be consumed in a day which drained out the ailing . Sometimes I wonder whether Corona is the killer of the trial and error techniques.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. Camphor is a medicine in homeopathy, how it works -one has to go through materia Medicaid homeopathy books.
    Dr. Vinay Mohabey.

    Liked by 1 person

  10. The patient with low oxygen is a fool to remove oxygen and smell camphor. Camper Puriya is good under normal conditions to keep oxygen level intact. It cleanses the wind pipe too. It is good to keep one such puriya in picket these days

    Liked by 1 person

  11. Thia nanoparticle-size virus named Covid-19 has rattled the whole medical science community to its core ! It makes them too , like a commoner , to make odd statements/declarations under the circumstances like today ! The silver lining in such confusion is the quick development of an effective vaccine against Covid-19 virus and the sane action of such quick action of granting O.K. for its immediate use under the prevailing emergency ! Thank God vaccines are being administered to world’s population on a war footing surmounting all impediments in its way ! Otherwise people would have had to resort to trying out alternate ( “holistic” ) medicines out of sheer desperation !
    Alas ! How those brilliant hard-working Pharmacologists /Pharmacists/Chemists/Biologists , the discoverers of those various vaccines , remain in the background and away from the glitter of media , only the “frontline” hospital staff getting all the limelight !

    Liked by 1 person

  12. Stupidity and idiocy are 2 underlying co-morbidities which are more lethal than covid itself and the fact is some morons still haven’t got the message from your article, as can be seen from some of the comments. Sir pls do not reply to them, you will be repeating same thing like a broken record and lose your sanity soon !


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