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What is Molar Cancer Pregnancy?

Florida Hospital Cancer Institute offers the latest and most effective treatment for molar cancer (molar pregnancy) in Orlando for residents of Central Florida and the surrounding regions. Molar pregancy, popularly known as molar cancer, is a term that is used to describe a number of cancerous and non-cancerous issues that involve the placental tissue. It occurs in roughly one of every 1,200 to 1,500 pregnancies. In a molar pregnancy, a mass of tissue forms an abnormal placenta inside the uterus. Even though the mole is not an embryo, it still triggers all the symptoms of a real pregnancy. Symptoms of a normal pregnancy can be intensified in a molar pregnancy, including morning sickness and high blood pressure. The uterus may also grow much faster than it would in a normal pregnancy. To learn more about treatment for molar cancer pregnancy in Orlando, or to schedule an appointment, call (407) 303-1700 or click here to fill out an online assistance form.

Symptoms of Molar Cancer Pregnancy

In most cases molar pregnancy brings on the same symptoms as a woman going through her first trimester of pregnancy. This can include a missed period, tenderness in the breasts, fatigue, the need to urinate more often and morning sickness.

In addition to these signs of pregnancy, you may also experience:

  • Vaginal discharge of grape shaped tissue. This is the most characteristic of the symptoms of molar pregnancy.
  • Vaginal bleeding.
  • A uterus that seems uncharacteristically large for the length of the pregnancy.
  • Severe nausea and vomiting.
  • Signs of hyperthyroidism, including fatigue, increased heart rate, weight loss, and intolerance to heat, sweating, irritability, anxiety, muscle weakness and thyroid enlargement.
  • Pelvic discomfort.

If you have any of these signs, you will want to see your doctor as soon as possible. While any one of these symptoms can be a sign of a number of health issues, further testing and an exam will confirm the actual cause.

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Causes of Molar Cancer Pregnancy

Molar pregancy is often the result of an abnormmally fertilized egg (a partial or incomplete molar pregnancy). This occurs when the mother's chromosomes remain while the father provides two sets of chromosomes. Instead of the embryo having 46 chromosomes as in a normal pregnancy, there 69 chromosomes present. This may happen when the father's chromosomes are duplicated or if the egg is fertilized by two sperm. 

Thought to be caused by a problem with the genetic information transmitted between an egg and sperm, molar pregnancy can develop during the first trimester of pregnancy when:

An abnormal egg that has no genetic information is fertilized by a sperm. In this case the sperm’s chromosomes duplicate and develop into a complete mole.

A normal egg is fertilized by two sperm. This cell mass has a high likelihood of developing into a partial mole.

Molar Pregnancy Statistics

One out of every 1,000 women with early pregnancy symptoms will experience a molar pregnancy. 
If you have had one or more molar pregnancies without complications, your risk of having another is between 1% and 2%.

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Types of Molar Cancer Pregnancy

There are two types of molar pregnancy, complete and partial. A complete molar pregnancy is a grapelike cluster of abnormal placental tissue that forms in the uterus. In a partial molar pregnancy, the placenta grows abnormal tissue that becomes molar tissue and any fetal tissue that does develop can have severe defects. 

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Risk Factors for Molar Cancer Pregnancy

Some factors are known to increase the chance of having a molar pregnancy. These include:

  • If you are over 31 years of age, the risk increases.
  • If you’ve had two or more cases of molar pregnancy, your chances of getting another case of molar pregnancy are greater.
  • A history of miscarriages.
  • A diet that is low in carotene. Women who have low carotene levels or Vitamin A deficiencies have a higher risk of developing a complete molar pregnancy.
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Treatment for Molar Cancer Pregnancy

The molar growth is removed from the uterus to prevent cancerous cells from growing. The uterus is then scraped of remaining cells that may be abnormal. If necessary, chemotherapy is used to kill the last of any remaining cancer cells. There is no way to prevent molar pregnancy or lower your risk of getting it.

To learn more about treatment for molar cancer pregnancy in Orlando, or to schedule an appointment, call (407) 303-1700 or click here to fill out an online assistance form.

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Request an Appointment

To learn more about treatment for molar cancer pregnancy in Orlando, or to schedule an appointment, call (407) 303-1700 or click here to fill out an online assistance form.

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