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Surgery to remove the molar pregnancy

A molar pregnancy occurs when the fertilisation of the egg by the sperm goes wrong and leads to the growth of abnormal cells or clusters of water filled sacs inside the womb.

If an ultrasound scan or blood test shows that you have a molar pregnancy you usually have an operation called suction dilatation and curettage (D and C). The operation removes the molar tissue from the womb.

The operation is also sometimes called SMM (surgical management of miscarriage) or ERPC (evacuation of retained products of conception.)

What a dilatation and suction evacuation (D and E) is

You have the operation under general anaesthetic in hospital. Once you are asleep, the surgeon opens up (dilates) the entrance to the womb (cervix). They gently put in a thin tube that uses gentle suction to remove as much of the molar tissue as possible.

The doctor might then use a small instrument called a curette to scrape the lining of the womb and clear away any remaining molar tissue.

After your operation

You stay in hospital for at least a few hours or overnight. 

You will have some bleeding for up to 6 weeks and it might be heavy and red at first. Let your doctor or specialist nurse know if the bleeding doesn't ease off or if it gets heavier.

After removal of a molar pregnancy you have regular blood tests or urine tests to check the levels of a hormone called hCG.

How you might feel

It’s not easy to deal with a molar pregnancy and you might have very strong emotions that feel overwhelming. Your nurse or midwife will support you and offer some options for counselling and support.

Information and help