Drug treatment to remove molar pregnancy

Once a molar pregnancy is diagnosed the molar tissue needs to be removed from the womb. Some women who have a partial molar pregnancy have drug treatment that makes the womb contract and get rid of the abnormal cells. This is called medical management or medical evacuation.

Before your treatment

Your nurse, doctor or midwife will explain the treatment to you. You can ask them any questions that you have. You are likely to feel upset and shocked and it can be hard to take in information. You can ask again if you need to. 

How you have the treatment

You have this treatment in hospital. Your nurse or midwife gives you some tablets that you swallow. They also gently put a pessary (like a large tablet) into the vagina close to the entrance of the womb. This helps the entrance to the womb to open up and allows the molar pregnancy tissue to pass out.

It normally takes a few hours for the medicines to work. Then you will have cramps in your abdomen (tummy) and some vaginal bleeding. It can take up to a few hours for the whole molar pregnancy to pass. You will have painkillers.

After the treatment

You might be able to go home the same day or you might need to stay in hospital overnight. You have some bleeding for up to 3 weeks afterwards. If the bleeding doesn’t stop or gets very heavy you should go back to the hospital straight away.

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.

Follow up tests after your treatment

For most women, the treatment removes most of the molar tissue and usually the remaining cells die off on their own. So no more treatment is needed. But sometimes a few cells can remain in the womb and carry on growing.

You need to have regular follow up to make sure you have no signs of remaining molar tissue.

Follow up means regular blood or urine tests to check the levels of a hormone called hCG in your blood and urine. If the levels stay high or they go up, you might need to have a course of chemotherapy.

About 1 out of every 100 women (1%) with a partial molar pregnancy need to have chemotherapy.

Related links