Treatment options for invasive mole and choriocarcinoma

Your healthcare team decide which treatment you need for an invasive mole or choriocarcinoma. This depends on:

  • how far your disease has grown or spread (the stage)
  • your risk score
  • your symptoms
  • if the cancer has spread

Your healthcare team

Usually a team of doctors and other health professionals work together. They consider your case and decide together on the best treatment for you. They specialise in different aspects of treatment, but work together as a multi disciplinary team (MDT). The team may include:

  • cancer specialists who treat cancer with cancer drugs (medical oncologist)
  • a GTD specialist nurse (clinical nurse specialist)
  • a pathologist who examines any cancer or molar tissue
  • physiotherapists
  • a radiologist who looks at your scans and x-rays
  • psychologists or counsellors

Treatment overview

Most people with an invasive mole or choriocarcinoma will have chemotherapy treatment. A few women might need surgery.

Chemotherapy and cancer drug treatments

Chemotherapy uses anti cancer (cytotoxic) drugs to destroy tumour cells. They work by disrupting cancer growth. Chemotherapy circulates in the bloodstream around the body.

Immunotherapy drugs help your immune system attack cancer. Although rare, some women’s disease might develop resistance to chemotherapy. So they have treatment with immunotherapy drugs.

The type of cancer drug treatment you need will depend on your stage and risk score. 


Your doctor might suggest surgery if your cancer doesn't respond to chemotherapy, or if you have completed your family and do not want to have chemotherapy. 

You might still need to have chemotherapy after a hysterectomy. Your specialist team will discuss this with you.

In very rare situations, women might have surgery to remove disease that has spread to other parts of the body.

Where you have treatment

To have treatment you go to one of the UK specialist centres:

  • Charing Cross Hospital, London
  • Weston Park Hospital, Sheffield

The amount of time you need to spend in hospital depends on the treatment you have. You are likely to need to stay in hospital for at least a week at the start of treatment. The overall course of treatment usually lasts between 3 and 6 months. You may be able to have much of the treatment as an outpatient at your local hospital.

Follow up

Following treatment, your healthcare team will monitor you closely. You have regular blood and urine tests to check your levels of hCG hormone. This is to check that the disease has completely gone and to look for any signs of it coming back.

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