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The herb false unicorn is native to North America east of the Mississippi River. It is similar in appearance but unrelated to “true” unicorn, Aletris farinose.
The root is the portion used medicinally. Native Americans and subsequently European physicians believed that false unicorn stimulates the uterus, promoting menstruation. It was used for dysmennorhea (painful menstruation), amenorrhoea (absent mensturuation), and irregular menstruation, as well as infections of the female genital tract.
It has been claimed that various natural herbs and supplements can improve the odds of early stages of dysplasia changing back to normal cells. If your physician suggests watchful waiting and a repeat examination, it should be safe to try some of these methods during the waiting period. Though there is no scientific evidence that these herbs are effective at treating advanced stages of cervical cancer, some practitioners might still prescribe them since they are seen as effective in earlier stages.
Effect of False Unicorn on Cervical Cancer
Some contemporary herbalists claim that false unicorn can help “balance” the female reproductive system, normalizing hormone levels and optimizing ovarian action. In some cases it is therefore thought to be possibly benefical for treating early stages of cervical cancer. False unicorn is also recommend for preventing miscarriages and treating infertility, dysmennorhea, PMS, pelvic inflammatory disease, and morning sickness. However, there is no meaningful evidence to support any of these uses.
Some herbalists support these proposed effects by referring to the presence of the hormone-like substance diosgenin in false unicorn. They claim that diosgenin either has hormonal properties, or that the body can use it to create hormones and bring balance back into the body - something extremely necessary for the treatment of any disease, including cancer.
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How to Use False Unicorn
A typical dose of false unicorn is 1–2 grams three times daily, or an equivalent amount in tincture form.
You should always seek medical advice before using any false unicorn root preparation.
- False unicorn root may cause nausea or vomiting when taken in large doses.
- False unicorn may cause gastric irritation, you should use it cautiously if you have gastrointestinal problems.
- False unicorn root may alter the actions of hormone drugs that affect the uterus. If you're taking estrogen or progesterone, you should consult first with your own doctor to find out whether it is safe to use False Unicorn with prescription drugs or other supplements.
- Pregnant and lactating women are advised to avoid using false unicorn root because of the lack of information on safety and efficacy of the herb in these patient groups.
- Newall CA, Anderson LA, Phillipson JD. Herbal Medicines: A Guide for Health-Care Professionals. London: Pharmaceutical Press; 1996:116.
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