A molar pregnancy can usually be diagnosed by abdominal ultrasound, which can show the presence of cysts in the uterus. A complete mole pregnancy may be easier to detect by ultrasound than a partial mole pregnancy. A woman will also be given a blood test to measure her levels of hCG.
How early can you detect a molar pregnancy on ultrasound?
An ultrasound of a complete molar pregnancy — which can be detected as early as eight or nine weeks of pregnancy — may show: No embryo or fetus.
What does a molar pregnancy look like on ultrasound?
The presence of the molar tissue is then detected. Ultrasound scanning shows a honeycomb pattern produced by the numerous vesicles. As they enlarge the image is described to look like a snowstorm, which is due to swollen cysts with bleeding into the uterus. The ovaries are often seen to contain large cysts.
How is a molar pregnancy diagnosed?
A molar pregnancy can usually be diagnosed by high resolution ultrasound scans, because of the distinctive appearance of molar tissue. A complete molar pregnancy may be easier to detect by ultrasound than a partial molar pregnancy.
How long can a molar pregnancy go undetected?
There are often no symptoms of a molar pregnancy. It may only be diagnosed during a routine ultrasound scan at 8-14 weeks or during tests are done after a miscarriage.
How high are hCG levels in molar pregnancy?
The measurement of high hCG levels in excess of 100,000 mIU/mL suggests the diagnosis of a complete molar pregnancy, particularly when associated with vaginal bleeding, uterine enlargement and abnormal ultrasound findings.
How quickly do hCG levels drop after molar pregnancy?
In most women the levels of hCG drop fairly rapidly. Once your hormone level reaches zero for three weeks, follow-up will cease for those with a partial mole. For women with a complete mole, you will progress to monthly blood tests for a further six months.
What happens if a molar pregnancy is not treated?
If not treated, a molar pregnancy can be dangerous to the woman. It sometimes can cause a rare form of cancer. A molar pregnancy is a kind of gestational trophoblastic disease (also called GTD). This is a group of conditions that cause tumors to grow in the uterus.
Will a molar pregnancy have a heartbeat?
Diagnosis. Most molar pregnancies are diagnosed in the first trimester. This condition may be discovered when a heartbeat does not become detectable by 12 weeks, but this can also be true of missed miscarriages.
Is a molar pregnancy a real baby?
Complete molar pregnancies have only placental parts (there is no baby) and form when the sperm fertilizes an empty egg. Because the egg is empty, no baby is formed. The placenta grows and produces the pregnancy hormone, hCG. Unfortunately, an ultrasound will show that there is no fetus, only a placenta.
Who is at risk for a molar pregnancy?
The risk of complete molar pregnancy is highest in women over age 35 and younger than 20. The risk is even higher for women over age 45. Age is less likely to be a factor for partial moles. For choriocarcinoma, risk is lower before age 25, and then increases with age until menopause.
How rare is a molar pregnancy?
Approximately 1 in every 1,000 pregnancies is diagnosed as a molar pregnancy. Various factors are associated with molar pregnancy, including: Maternal age. A molar pregnancy is more likely in women older than age 35 or younger than age 20.
Do you get morning sickness with a molar pregnancy?
A molar pregnancy causes the same early symptoms that a normal pregnancy does, such as a missed period or morning sickness.
Are molar pregnancies painful?
Pelvic pain and pressure.
Tissues in a molar pregnancy grow faster than they should, especially in the second trimester. Your stomach may look too large for that early stage in pregnancy. The fast growth can also cause pressure and pain.
How do you know if you have a blighted ovum or molar pregnancy?
Blighted ovum and partial molar pregnancy can look similar on an ultrasound. However, a partial mole usually shows the remains of embryonic tissue, which never appears in a blighted ovum.
Do you always bleed with a molar pregnancy?
Choriocarcinomas can cause persistent bleeding in the weeks or months after delivery, but this happens very rarely. (Most bleeding like this is not caused by a choriocarcinoma). Choriocarcinomas associated with molar pregnancies almost always follow complete moles rather than partial moles.