What is a complete molar pregnancy?
A complete molar pregnancy, also known as a hydatidiform mole, is a rare and abnormal condition that occurs when conception results in a nonviable fetus with no fetal tissue. Instead, the embryo is composed of an abnormal, swollen mass of cysts or vesicles. It is caused by an abnormality in the chromosomes of the egg and/or sperm, and can lead to a significant health risk for the mother.
What are the symptoms of a complete molar pregnancy?
The most common symptom of a complete molar pregnancy is an unusually large uterus, which is often accompanied by uterine bleeding, nausea and vomiting. The size of the uterus can indicate whether the growth is normal or an abnormal tumor. A doctor may also use ultrasound to check for an abnormally shaped fetus. Other symptoms include:
- Abdominal swelling
- High levels of human chorionic gonadotropin (hCG) in the bloodstream
- Presence of grape-like clusters and particles in the uterus
What are the risks of having a complete molar pregnancy?
The risks associated with a complete molar pregnancy include:
- An increased risk of developing gestational trophoblastic disease (GTD) in which abnormal cells form in the uterus
- An increased risk of preterm labor and delivery
- A higher risk of miscarriage
Can a complete molar pregnancy be treated?
Yes, treatment for a complete molar pregnancy can involve medication, a surgical evacuation (removal of the fetus and placenta) and/or chemotherapy, depending on the type and severity of the condition. Treatment is important in order to prevent the further spread of abnormal cells, reduce the risk of GTD and ensure the health of the mother.
What is the long-term outlook for women who have had a complete molar pregnancy?
The long-term outlook for women who have had a complete molar pregnancy is generally good, as the majority of cases can be successfully treated and cleared with proper medical management. However, follow-up care is recommended to monitor for additional cases of GTD, as some cases can recur. Regular ultrasounds and blood tests are also recommended in order to monitor the health of the patient.
What are the possible complications of a complete molar pregnancy?
1. Excessive bleeding during or after delivery.
2. Inherited genetic abnormalities in future pregnancies.
3. Formation of a cystic mass (hydatidiform mole) within the uterus.
4. Development of GTD (Gestational Trophoblastic Disease), which may lead to tumor growth in the uterus or metastasis in other parts of the body.
5. Uterine infection.
6. Possible effects on fertility.
7. Psychological impact of losing a pregnancy.
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