Molar Pregnancies

  • Kurt Benirschke
  • Peter Kaufmann


The term “gestational trophoblastic neoplasia” has become popular in recent years, although it comprises entities that are clearly not neoplastic, such as triploid partial moles. Driscoll (1981), in an excellent review of the morphology of these diseases, strongly favored abandonment of the time-honored term hydatidiform mole. Fox (1989) has added fuel to the fire by suggesting the following: “Is it, in fact, justifiable to continue distinguishing complete from partial moles in routine histopathological practice?” He based this opinion primarily on the exceptional finding of a single case of choriocarcinoma said to have followed a partial mole (Looi & Sivanesaratnam, 1981). This view is not ours. After all, choriocarcinoma is also an occasional sequela of an apparently normal gestation, as Fox readily conceded, and there may have been a choriocarcinomatous cell line ab initio. The typical hydatidiform mole (complete mole), syncytial endometritis, invasive moles (chorioadenoma destruens), benign metastasizing mole, the partial hydatidiform mole with or without fetus, and ectopic moles are discussed in this chapter. Their terminology is often confusing and imprecisely used. Choriocarcinoma is covered in Chapter 23.


Hydatidiform Mole Gestational Trophoblastic Disease Molar Pregnancy Trophoblastic Tumor Gestational Trophoblastic Neoplasia 
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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 1995

Authors and Affiliations

  • Kurt Benirschke
    • 1
  • Peter Kaufmann
    • 2
  1. 1.University Medical CenterUniversity of California, San DiegoSan DiegoUSA
  2. 2.Institut für Anatomie der Medizinischen FakultätRheinisch-Westfälische Technische Hochschule AachenAachenGermany

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