Stephen J. Schueler, M.D.

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Cancer of the Placenta Overview

Another name for Cancer of the Placenta is Choriocarcinoma.

What is choriocarcinoma?
A woman with choriocarcinoma has a growth of abnormal cells in the placenta that multiply out of control. These cells can form tumors and spread to other parts of the body. Choriocarcinoma is usually detected by ultrasound during pregnancy, and responds well to treatment. The exact cause of choriocarcinoma is unknown, but occurs more commonly in women who are over the age of 40.

What are the symptoms of choriocarcinoma?
Symptoms of choriocarcinoma occur during pregnancy and include abnormal nipple discharge, vomiting, leg swelling, high blood pressure, and vaginal bleeding.

How does the doctor treat choriocarcinoma?
Treatment options for choriocarcinoma include chemotherapy, dilation and curettage, hysterectomy, and radiation therapy.

Continue to Cancer of the Placenta Risk Factors

Last Updated: Aug 25, 2010 References
Authors: Stephen J. Schueler, MD; John H. Beckett, MD; D. Scott Gettings, MD
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PubMed Cancer of the Placenta References
  1. Altieri A, Franceschi S, Ferlay J, Smith J, La Vecchia C. Epidemiology and aetiology of gestational trophoblastic diseases. Lancet Oncol. 2003 Nov;4(11):670-8. [1460224]
  2. Bailey JL, Hinton EA, Ashfaq R, Schorge JO. Primary abdominal gestational choriocarcinoma. Obstet Gynecol. 2003 Nov;102(5 Pt 1):988-90. [14672474]
  3. Kim SJ. Placental site trophoblastic tumour. Best Pract Res Clin Obstet Gynaecol. 2003 Dec;17(6):969-84. [14614893]
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