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Is Molar Pregnancy A Tumor?

Molar pregnancy takes place whenever the egg fertilization via sperm goes in the wrong way and results in the growth of water-filled sacs clusters or abnormal cells in the womb. In case of healthy pregnancy, growth of the placenta takes place in the uterus to nourish the baby with the help of connected umbilical cord.

Is Molar Pregnancy A Tumor?

Is Molar Pregnancy A Tumor?

Yes, molar pregnancy is a type of tumor and it requires removal via surgical procedure. However, the positive aspect is that in most of the cases, the tumor does not grow to cause cancer.

In case of a molar pregnancy, tissue present in your uterus forms an abnormal mass i.e. tumor instead of the formation of placenta. Molar pregnancy categorizes itself as one among the group of conditions referred as GTDs i.e. Gestational Trophoblastic Disease. Doctors even call this condition as hydatidiform moles.

Your pregnancy may seem to be normal at the initial phase. However, with time, you may start noticing various symptoms indicating your problem related to molar pregnancy. These include-

  • Excessive vaginal bleeding during the initial trimester i.e. first 3 months of your pregnancy
  • Discharge of watery brown colored liquid from your vagina
  • Passing out of sacs (often looking like grapes clusters) from the vagina
  • Frequent and/or severe vomiting and nausea as compared to the normal condition during your pregnancy period
  • Excessive pain and pressure in the pelvic region
  • If you experience any of the aforementioned symptoms or any other unusual ones, you should consult with your gynecologists immediately.

Molar Pregnancy And Tumor

Molar pregnancies are of rare conditions and they are common types of gestational trophoblastic type of tumors. To understand about molar pregnancy and tumor in detail, you have to know about two different types of molar pregnancy i.e. partial molar pregnancy and complete molar pregnancy in detail.

Complete Molar Pregnancy

If a woman has a complete mole, parts of a baby i.e. fetal tissue does not form. Instead, only molar tissue remains present in the woman’s womb. Complete mole condition takes place whenever sperm from her partner fertilizes any empty egg, which does not contain any gene of the mother. In most of the cases, gynecologists perform surgery to remove the molar tissue. However, in approximately 10 percent to 15 percent cases, molar tissues continue to remain present in the womb’s deep tissues or any other part of the woman’s body. Doctors call this condition as persistent gestational tumor. In this case, women have to undergo chemotherapy to obtain completely removal of the abnormal cells.

Partial Molar Pregnancy

In case of partial molar pregnancy, a woman has a partial mole i.e. few of her fetal tissues may remain present within the molar ones. In this situation, one should essentially understand that fetal tissues present within molar tissues are unable to develop into a baby even it appears similar to fetus on ultrasound scanning process.

Partial mole formation takes place when two different sperms fertilize a single egg simultaneously, because of which there are two sets of chromosomes from the father, while only a single set from the mother. In this case, doctors remove the molar tissue via surgical procedure. Many women with partial mode do not require any other treatment. However, in some cases, women may suffer from persistent gestational tumor, as similar to the case of complete mole pregnancy.

Details Of Persistent Gestational Tumor

Persistent Gestational Tumor or persistent trophoblastic problem takes place when some of the molar tissues left and continue to grow to form a tumor even if you undergo treatment for the removal of your molar pregnancy. However, this condition takes place in only 8% of the women and in case if any woman leaves it untreated, it grows at a fast pace and cause various other medical problems. Hence, women experiencing persistent trophoblastic problem require chemotherapy treatment.


  1. Lurain, J. R. (2010). Gestational trophoblastic disease I: epidemiology, pathology, clinical presentation and diagnosis of gestational trophoblastic disease, and management of hydatidiform mole. American journal of obstetrics and gynecology, 203(6), 531-539.
  2. Seckl, M. J., & Sebire, N. J. (2010). Berkowitz’s gynecologic oncology. Lippincott Williams & Wilkins.
  3. National Cancer Institute. (2021). Gestational Trophoblastic Disease Treatment (PDQ®)–Patient Version. Retrieved from https://www.cancer.gov/types/gestational-trophoblastic/patient/gtd-treatment-pdq
  4. Savage, P. M., Sita-Lumsden, A., Dickson, S., Iyer, R., Everard, J., Coleman, R., & Seckl, M. J. (2013). The relationship of maternal age to molar pregnancy incidence, risks for chemotherapy and subsequent pregnancy outcome. Journal of obstetrics and gynaecology, 33(4), 406-411.

Also Read:

Pramod Kerkar, M.D., FFARCSI, DA
Pramod Kerkar, M.D., FFARCSI, DA
Written, Edited or Reviewed By: Pramod Kerkar, M.D., FFARCSI, DA Pain Assist Inc. This article does not provide medical advice. See disclaimer
Last Modified On:August 1, 2023

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