Partial Mole

A mole with a fetus or fetal parts. Women with partial (incomplete) molar pregnancies tend to present later than those with complete moles:

Karyotype: Usually 69XXY, and contains both maternal and paternal DNA

Epidemiology: 1 in 50,000 pregnancies in the United States

DNA of a partial mole is both maternal and paternal.

A young woman who passes grape-like vesicles from her vagina should be diagnosed with hydatidiform mole.

All early (< 20 weeks) preeclampsia is molar pregnancy until proven otherwise.

GTN secrete human chorionic gonadotropin (hCG),

Ten to 15% of complete moles will be malignant. Two percent of partial moles will be malignant.

Any of the following on exam indicates molar pregnancy:

■ Passage of grape-like vesicles

■ Preeclampsia early in pregnancy

■ Snow storm pattern on ultrasound

Nonmetastatic malignancy has almost a 100% remission rate following chemotherapy.

A hydatidiform mole that invades the myometrium: It is by definition malignant, and thus treatment involves complete metastatic workup and appropriate malignant/metastatic therapy (see below).

Histology of Hydatidiform Mole

■ Trophoblastic proliferation

■ Hydropic degeneration (swollen villi)

■ Lack/scarcity of blood vessels

Signs and Symptoms

■ Passage of vesicles (look like grapes)

■ Preeclampsia < 20 weeks

■ Abnormal painless bleeding in first trimester


■ Absence of fetal heartbeat

■ Ultrasound- "snowstorm" pattern

■ Pathologic specimen—grapelike vesicles

■ Histologic specimen (see above)

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