Types of treatment for 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. There are different surgical options available to remove a molar pregnancy.

Surgery for molar pregnancy

Most women have a minor operation under general anaesthetic to remove the molar tissue from the womb. The operation is called a dilatation and suction evacuation (D and E). The surgeon uses a thin tube to gently suck out the molar tissue. Sometimes they might also use a sharp instrument to cut the tissue away from the womb lining. This is called dilation and curettage (D and C).

This treatment gets rid of all of the molar tissue for good for most women.

Removal of the womb (hysterectomy)

If you have completed your family, your surgeon might offer removal of the womb (hysterectomy) instead of only removing the molar tissue. This isn't common. Hysterectomy is a bigger operation and your surgeon will discuss the benefits and possible disadvantages with you.

Drug treatment to remove molar tissue

Some women who have a partial molar pregnancy have drug treatment to make the womb contract and get rid of the abnormal cells. This is called medical management or medical evacuation.

Follow up

Once you’ve had treatment to remove the molar tissue, your treatment team will monitor you (follow up). Follow up means keeping a very close eye on the levels of a hormone called hCG in your blood and urine.

Your blood and urine tests are checked at specialist hospitals in London, Sheffield or Dundee. This is because molar pregnancies are very rare, and the experts treating them are based in a few places.

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