molar pregnancy: what it is, symptoms, risks and treatment

A molar pregnancy, also known as a hydatidiform mole, is the result of a defective fertilization, which unfortunately prevents the formation of a fetus.

Molas can take two forms

It is not known for sure why the molar pregnancies occur, but have identified risk factors

A molar pregnancy begins like any other, with a positive test and early pregnancy symptoms. The signs that could alert you to a molar pregnancy are

To confirm a molar pregnancy, your doctor may perform a pelvic exam, blood tests and an ultrasound.

The pelvic examination reveals the size of your uterus, which in the middle of a molar pregnancy is usually larger than expected for gestational age, or smaller in 30% of cases.

The blood test is a quantitative analysis of the hormone hCG, known as the pregnancy hormone. high levels for gestational age may indicate a molar pregnancy or other complications.

Through an ultrasound test your doctor can check for the mole. In cases of complete molar pregnancy, it looks like a lot of balls, similar to a bunch of grapes (as pictured) training. This way your doctor also notes that no heartbeat or an embryo.

A molar pregnancy is not viable. All tissues of the mole should be removed, otherwise it could become a cancerous mass. The most common procedure is to remove curettage, which is usually done by suction or vacuum. You can also have a hysterectomy if you do not want to become pregnant again.

Your doctor will monitor you until your hCG hormone levels return to normal. Six to twelve months after you must be revised again to verify that there are no remaining tissues that have become invasive or cancerous moles.

You must wait a year before trying to get pregnant again. After a molar pregnancy, you only have a 1% chance that the mole be repeated, but if you had two molar pregnancies, the risk of having a third is 32%.

Sources; American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologysts. Early Pregnancy Loss: Miscarriage and Molar Pregnancy. Accessed April 13, 2013; American Pregnancy Association. Molar Pregnancy. Accessed April 13, 2013; Chun, T., MD, and Dickman, E., MD. Molar Pregnancy. Western Journal of Emergency Medicine. May 2010, 11 (2) .; UpToDate. Gestational trophoblastic disease: Management of hydatidiform mole. Accessed April 13, 2013, National Library of Medicine. Hydatidiform mole. Accessed April 12, 2013.

Also known as: hydatidiform mole, hydatidiform mole