Staging is a system that doctors use to describe the size of a tumour and whether it has spread.

What happens

Doctors usually remove the abnormal molar pregnancy tissue from the womb. If the levels of a hormone called hCG go back to normal soon after removal of the molar pregnancy then your doctor won't need to give it a stage. 

In most women, the hCG level virtually disappears within 4 to 6 weeks of removing the molar pregnancy. Once the molar tissue has gone from the womb, it can’t produce hCG. So apart from follow up blood tests and urine tests to check for any return of the molar tissue, you won’t need any further tests to stage it. And you won’t need any further treatment.

If the hCG levels don't go down

If your levels of hCG level stay high or go up this could be a sign that abnormal cells are still present in the womb. The cells could spread into the deeper layers of the womb or other parts of the body. Doctors call this persistent trophoblastic disease.

In this case you will need further tests to help find the stage of the tumour. The stage tells the doctor if the gestational trophoblastic tumour has spread, and if so, how far.

Related links