What is Molar Pregnancy and its Symptoms, causes and Treatment


What is Molar Pregnancy and its Symptoms, causes and Treatment

Have you ever wondered how babies are born?


How our body changes during pregnancy?

Let us explain!

During pregnancy, an egg fertilises, and the placenta is formed inside the uterus. With the help of the umbilical cord, the placenta feeds the baby inside the womb. All of this continues until the baby is born. However, since pregnancy is a complex procedure, sometimes the procedure may not go as it should and may turn into an abnormal pregnancy.

One such condition is a molar pregnancy. An uncommon occurrence, in molar pregnancy, an egg is fertilised; however, the baby does not develop.  Sadly, this type of pregnancy does not last. Complications of molar pregnancy may arise due to a number of factors. It is mentally and physically traumatic for parents, especially because there is nothing that they could have done differently.

Molar pregnancy requires immediate medical treatment. In this article, we will discuss molar pregnancy meaning, its causes and the treatment of molar pregnancy. So, let's get started.

Understanding Molar Pregnancy 

A molar pregnancy is also known as a hydatidiform mole. A molar pregnancy occurs when the placenta does not develop, and benign tumours are formed in the uterus. These abnormal cell growths are known as trophoblast. It turns the placenta into liquid-filled cysts, which, if not treated immediately, can become a serious problem. A molar pregnancy is not a successful one and either terminates on its own or is done through surgery. Since the placenta is not formed, nourishment for the baby is not possible, leading to miscarriage or other problems for the mother.

Types of Molar Pregnancy

Molar pregnancies can be of two types. The differentiation is done on the basis of the condition that leads to the molar pregnancy. The consequences remain the same, that is, unsuccessful pregnancy and other complications. However, in both types of molar pregnancy, the tumours remain benign, that is, non-cancerous. The types of molar pregnancy are:

Partial Molar Pregnancy 

A partial molar pregnancy is a condition that happens when two sperm fertilise one egg. This leads to the formation of an abnormal placenta. Since the embryo, in this case, has an extra set of chromosomes (due to two sperm fertilising one egg), the pregnancy terminates after a point, even if the embryo shows signs of growth.

Complete Molar Pregnancy 

In a complete molar pregnancy, the sperm fertilises an empty egg, leading to no formation of the embryo. The placenta turns into non-cancerous cysts, and thus, the pregnancy remains unsuccessful. However, the placenta tissues produce HCG (Human Chorionic Gonadotropin), the pregnancy hormones. Hence, in a pregnancy test, you may get a positive result.

Causes of Molar Pregnancy 

Finding the exact causes of hydatidiform mole is not possible. It has nothing to do with anything you or your partner did. Molar pregnancy can happen to any expecting mother of any ethnicity, location, and age. It is primarily abnormalities in the fertilisation process and the sets of chromosomes. Here is how a molar pregnancy forms:

1. Complete Molar Pregnancy 

In a complete molar pregnancy, there is no chromosome of the mother. There are only 23 chromosomes of the father. Hence, pregnancy is not possible.

2. Incomplete/partial Molar Pregnancy 

In an incomplete molar pregnancy, two sperm fertilise one egg. Hence, the total number of chromosomes is 69. Again, in such a situation, pregnancy is not possible.

For a pregnancy to be successful, the embryo gets two sets of chromosomes, one from the father and the other from the mother. Together, they make 46 chromosomes (23 from each). Only then a healthy pregnancy is carried out by the body. Hence, the primary molar pregnancy causes is the genetic error that occurs during the fertilisation process.

Symptoms of Molar Pregnancy

At first, the symptoms of a molar pregnancy may seem similar to that of a healthy pregnancy. However, gradually, you may see hydatidiform mole signs and symptoms. These include:

1. Bleeding

In a molar pregnancy, vaginal bleeding is a possibility in the first trimester of the pregnancy. The colour of the blood may be bright red to dark brown. Sometimes, the bleeding may come out in the form of cysts.

2. Severe Nausea

Nausea and vomiting are a part of pregnancy which is caused by the formation of the placenta. In a molar pregnancy, the HCG amount can be quite high, which may lead to more severe nausea and vomiting than a normal pregnancy. It is best to consult with your doctor if you experience so.

3. Pelvic Pressure

If a molar pregnancy does not terminate in the first trimester and continues, the growth of the stomach may be too fast. As for the second trimester, the stomach may look too large due to the faster growth of the abnormal tissues.

Treatment of Molar Pregnancy 

After a mother has been diagnosed with a molar pregnancy, your doctor will recommend treatment for the same to help you return to a healthy state. Depending on the type of molar pregnancy and the complications associated, the type of treatment can be recommended.

Dilation and Curettage (D&C)

Women who wish to get pregnant again can go with D&C surgery. In this, the doctor removes the tissues from the uterus through surgery.


Hysterectomy is the procedure to remove the uterus. This is a better option for people who do not wish to get pregnant again.


Chemo is needed for people who develop serious gestational trophoblastic disease (GTD). In this situation, the abnormal tissues grow outside the uterus instead of within the uterus. Hence, chemotherapy is used to remove the build-up of the tissues.

Do not worry; having a successful pregnancy after a molar pregnancy is completely possible until your health doesn't allow it and your doctor doesn't recommend it anymore. Usually, after some time, you can get normal and expect pregnancy again.

>> Also Read: How to Claim the Maternity Cover in Health Insurance?

Who is at Risk of Molar Pregnancy?

Apart from the causes of hydatidiform mole, there are certain risk factors associated with the parents. Some people may be at higher risk of molar pregnancy, such as:

  • Age: Molar pregnancy is not bound to a certain age group. However, the chances of developing a molar pregnancy are higher in women below the age of 15-20 or those above 35-40.
  • Molar Pregnancy History: An abnormal molar pregnancy can happen to anyone, even women who have had a history of healthy pregnancies. However, those women with a history of molar pregnancy are at higher risk of developing another molar pregnancy.
  • Pregnancy Loss: Someone who has experienced a pregnancy loss or conceiving problems earlier may be at risk of molar pregnancy.

Let’s Conclude with Hope

So, yes a healthy pregnancy is possible even after a molar pregnancy.

An unsuccessful pregnancy or a miscarriage can be quite overwhelming and difficult to overcome. Some conditions may also have other health issues for the mother. In various cases, surgery is the solution to terminate a molar pregnancy. If you have experienced a molar pregnancy in the past, it is best to get the advice of your doctor before planning a pregnancy again.

Apart from the mental and emotional exhaustion, pregnancy complications may also attract hefty medical expenses. In order to help you cope with the rising medical costs, Care Health Insurance is here with the Maternity Health Insurance Plan. This health insurance is planned to keep in mind the needs of an expecting mother and her journey of pregnancy and childbirth. To know more about Care Health Pregnancy Plan, allow us to call you.

We wish you good health and a happy pregnancy!

Disclaimers: The above information is for reference purposes only: Policy Assurance and Claims at the underwriter's discretion.

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