How is a molar pregnancy diagnosed?
can confirm a molar pregnancy with:
- A pelvic exam.
- A blood test to
measure your pregnancy hormones.
- A pelvic ultrasound.
Your doctor can also find a molar pregnancy during a
ultrasound in early pregnancy. Partial molar
pregnancies are often found when a woman is treated for an
What are the risks of having a molar pregnancy?
molar pregnancy can cause heavy bleeding from the uterus.
molar pregnancies lead to gestational
trophoblastic disease, a growth of abnormal tissue inside the uterus. Sometimes this tissue keeps
growing after the molar pregnancy is removed.
- Complete molar pregnancies: Out of 1000 cases of complete molar pregnancy, 150 to 200 develop
trophoblastic disease that keeps growing after the tissue is removed. This means that in the other 800 to 850 cases, this doesn't
- Partial molar pregnancies: Out of
1000 cases of partial molar pregnancy, about 50 develop trophoblastic
disease. This means that in 950 cases out of 1000,
this doesn't happen.
Almost all women who get this cancer are cured with
In a few cases, trophoblastic disease turns into cancer.
In rare cases, the abnormal
tissue can spread to other parts of the body.
How is it treated?
When you have a molar
pregnancy, you need treatment right away to remove all of the growth from your
uterus. The growth is removed with
a procedure called vacuum aspiration.
If you are done having children, you may decide to have your uterus removed (hysterectomy) instead of having a vacuum aspiration to treat your molar pregnancy.
After treatment, you will have regular blood tests to look for signs of
trophoblastic disease. These blood tests will be done over the next 6 to 12
months. If you still have your uterus, you will need to use birth control for the next 6 to 12 months so you don't get pregnant. It is very important to see your doctor for all follow-up visits.
If you do get trophoblastic disease, there's a small
chance that it will turn into cancer. But your doctor will likely find it early
so it can be cured with
chemotherapy. In the rare case when the cancer has had
time to spread to other parts of the body, more chemotherapy is needed,
sometimes combined with radiation treatment.