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No, guava and soursop infusion won’t remove ovarian cysts, clear fallopian tubes and increase sperm count

“This natural remedy with guava leaves and soursop is effective in cleaning the uterus, ovarian cyst, fallopian tubes and helps increase sperm count,” reads a message shared on Facebook.

“This mixture works wonderfully!!!”

It says to boil a well-washed handful of guava and soursop leaves in a litre of water, and then strain. “Drink warm Morning and evening, half a cup.” It adds that the remedy will also lower blood pressure, as a side effect.

But will this simple infusion really “clean” the uterus, remove ovarian cysts, clear blocked fallopian tubes and increase sperm count? We checked.


Understanding the medical conditions

The ovaries are two almond-shaped organs on each side of the womb, or uterus. In adult women, they produce hormones and release an egg about once a month.

Ovarian cysts are sacs filled with fluid that develop on one of the ovaries.

The fallopian tubes connect the ovaries to the womb. The egg is fertilised by sperm in one of the tubes, which then carries the fertilised egg to the womb. If one or both tubes is blocked, a woman may struggle to fall pregnant.

An ectopic pregnancy is when a fertilised egg stays in a fallopian tube and starts to grow there. This can be life-threatening, as the tube may eventually rupture and cause severe internal bleeding.

A low sperm count is when a man has fewer than 15 million sperm in each millilitre of his ejaculate. No sperm count means there is no sperm in a man’s ejaculate.

See a doctor instead

“I have no information that this remedy will treat all of these conditions; none whatsoever,” Nimi Briggs, a professor of obstetrics and gynaecology at Nigeria’s University of Port Harcourt, told Africa Check.

“Women with ovarian cysts or blocked fallopian tubes should see their doctors who can carry out the appropriate investigation and then apply the appropriate treatment.”

The British National Health Service says that “in most cases, the cyst often disappears after a few months. A follow-up ultrasound scan may be used to confirm this.” Blocked or scarred fallopian tubes may need surgery to repair them.

Sulyman Alege Kuranga, professor of urology at the faculty of clinical sciences at the University of Ilorin in western Nigeria, told Africa Check that the remedy would not increase the sperm count. “No, there’s nothing like that, there is no scientific evidence for it.”

He advised men who were worried about their sperm count to seek medical advice from experts.

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