Is there any consensus amongst Muslim scholars as to which medicinal preperations are permitted whilst fasting. More specifically are: a)tablets/syrups b)inhalers for asthma c)suppositories and d)intravenous forms of treatment allowed.
The question of inhalers for asthma is very pertinent to us in the UK, as some 20% of young people now suffer from asthma.
I would appreciate a detailed response with reference to any conference proceedings etc if possible
Praise be to Allaah.
There follows a list of a number of things used in the medical field, explaining what does and does not break the fast. This is a summary of shar’i research presented to the Islamic Fiqh Council during its regular meetings:
I – The following things do not have any effect on the fast:
Eye drops, ear drops, ear syringing, nose drops and nasal sprays – so long as one avoids swallowing any material that may reach the throat.
Tablets or lozenges that are placed beneath the tongue for the treatment of angina pectoris etc., so long as one avoids swallowing any material that reaches the throat.
Vaginal pessaries, douching, use of a speculum, or internal digital examination.
Introduction of a scope or coil (IUD), etc., into the uterus.
Introduction of a scope or catheter into the urethra (male of female), or injection of dyes for diagnostic imaging, or of medication, or cleaning of the bladder.
Drilling of teeth (prior to filling), extraction or polishing of teeth, using a miswaak or toothbrush, so long as one avoids swallowing any material that reaches the throat.
Rinsing, gargling or applying topical treatment in the mouth, so long as one avoids swallowing any material that reaches the throat.
Injections, whether subcutaneous, intra-muscular or intra-venous – with the exception of those used for purposes of nutrition.
Anaesthetics, so long as they do not supply nutrition to the patient.
Medicines absorbed through the skin, such as creams, lotions and patches used to administer medication through the skin.
Introduction of a catheter into the veins in order to examine or treat the vessels of the heart or other organs.
Laparoscopy for the purpose of diagnosis or surgical treatment of the abdominal organs.
Biopsies of the liver and other organs, so long as this is not accompanied by the administration of nutrients.
Gastroscopy, so long as this is not accompanied by the administration of nutrients.
Introduction of medicine or instruments into the brain or spinal cord.
Involuntary vomiting (as opposed to self-induced vomiting).
II – The Muslim doctor should advise his patient to postpone the above-described treatments and procedures until after he has broken his fast, if it is safe to do so and will not cause any harm (even if these procedures will not have any effect on his fast).
Majma’ al-Fiqh al-Islami (Islamic Fiqh Council), p. 213. (www.islam-qa.com
I am going to have two non-invasive medical procedures during the month of Ramadaan, and I am going to take a drug via injection during these two procedures. Will my fast be invalidated by that?.
Praise be to Allaah.
Being given medicine via injection does not break the fast, whether it is intramuscular or intravenous, so long as the injected substance does not provide nutrition, because in that case it is like food and drink which are forbidden to the one who is fasting.
It says in Fataawa al-Lajnah al-Daa’imah (10/252):
It is permissible to be given medicine via injection into the muscles or veins when fasting during the day in Ramadaan. But it is not permissible for the fasting person to be given nutrients during the day in Ramadaan, because that comes under the same rulings as consuming food and drink, and this injection is regarded as a means of breaking the fast in Ramadaan. If it is possible to give the injection into a muscle or vein during the night, that is preferable. End quote.
Shaykh Ibn ‘Uthaymeen (may Allaah have mercy on him) was asked about the spread of anaesthesia through the body – does that break the fast? And what about the flow of blood when a tooth is extracted?
Neither of these breaks the fast, but the blood that flows after removal of a tooth should not be swallowed. End quote.
Fataawa Ramadaan, p. 525
It makes no difference whether it is a local or general anaesthetic. Many of the fuqaha’ have stated that if a person who is unconscious is awake for even a moment of the day, his fast is valid, so long as he formed the intention to fast from the night before.
Imaam al-Shaafa’i said in al-Umm (8/153):
If a man loses consciousness for a day or two days during the month of Ramadaan, and he did not eat or drink anything, then he has to make up those days. But if he was awake for part of the day, then he is regarded as having fasted on that day. End quote.
Ibn Qudaamah said in al-Mughni (4/343):
If he was unconscious for the whole day and did not wake up at all, then his fast is not valid, according to the view of our imam (i.e., Imam Ahmad) and al-Shaafa’i…
If the person who was unconscious woke up for a part of the day, his fast is valid, whether that was at the beginning or the end of the day. End quote.
And Allaah knows best.
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