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Disease Profile

Gestational trophoblastic tumor

Prevalence estimates on Rare Medical Network websites are calculated based on data available from numerous sources, including US and European government statistics, the NIH, Orphanet, and published epidemiologic studies. Rare disease population data is recognized to be highly variable, and based on a wide variety of source data and methodologies, so the prevalence data on this site should be assumed to be estimated and cannot be considered to be absolutely correct.


US Estimated

Europe Estimated

Age of onset






Autosomal dominant A pathogenic variant in only one gene copy in each cell is sufficient to cause an autosomal dominant disease.


Autosomal recessive Pathogenic variants in both copies of each gene of the chromosome are needed to cause an autosomal recessive disease and observe the mutant phenotype.


dominant X-linked dominant inheritance, sometimes referred to as X-linked dominance, is a mode of genetic inheritance by which a dominant gene is carried on the X chromosome.


recessive Pathogenic variants in both copies of a gene on the X chromosome cause an X-linked recessive disorder.


Mitochondrial or multigenic Mitochondrial genetic disorders can be caused by changes (mutations) in either the mitochondrial DNA or nuclear DNA that lead to dysfunction of the mitochondria and inadequate production of energy.


Multigenic or multifactor Inheritance involving many factors, of which at least one is genetic but none is of overwhelming importance, as in the causation of a disease by multiple genetic and environmental factors.


Not applicable


Other names (AKA)

Gestational trophoblastic neoplasm; GTN


Congenital and Genetic Diseases


The following summary is from Orphanet, a European reference portal for information on rare diseases and orphan drugs.

Orpha Number: 59305

Gestational trophoblastic tumors (GTT) are malignant forms of gestational trophoblastic disease. The tumor always follows pregnancy, most often molar pregnancy (hydatidiform mole; see this term). Four histological subtypes have been described: invasive mole, gestational choriocarcinoma, placental site trophoblastic tumor and epithelioid trophoblastic tumor (see these terms).

Exact annual incidence is not known but it is estimated to be about 1/1,000,000 women.

Clinical description
GTTs occur following hydatidiform moles (see this term) (15% of complete moles and about 3% of partial moles), following spontaneous miscarriage (1/150) or childbirth (1/40,000). Indicative signs are an absence of normalization or a secondary elevation of total serum chorionic gonadotropin (hCG) levels after evacuation of a hydatidiform mole (more than 60% of cases), persistent unexplained metrorrhagia following spontaneous miscarriage or voluntary termination of pregnancy (VTP) (about 30% of cases) and very occasionally, unexplained metrorrhagia in the weeks or months following normal childbirth or ectopic pregnancy (about 10% of cases). Exceptionally, metastasis may be a sign of the disease in women of childbearing age.

The etiology of gestational trophoblastic tumors is not known. Identification of a GTT is based on a total serum hCG assay, which is recommended following hydatidiform moles in patients with metrorrhagia persisting for more than six weeks after pregnancy, and in any patient of childbearing age who has metastasis (lung, liver, brain, kidney, vagina) with no known primary tumor.

Diagnostic methods
Diagnosis of a post-molar GTT relies on one of the following four criteria: stable hCG levels (variation of less than 10%) with at least four weekly assays over a period of at least three weeks (days 1, 7, 14, 21), increase of at least 10% in hCG with at least three weekly assays over at least two weeks (days 1, 7, 14), persistence of detectable hCG values for more than six months following mole evacuation or based on histological diagnosis of a choriocarcinoma.

Differential diagnosis
GTTs must not be confused with hydatidiform moles (see this term) and, for choriocarcinomas, with non-gestational choriocarcinomas, which are most often ovarian.

Management and treatment
As soon as the diagnosis is made, staging must be performed to identify frequent metastases. Staging involves endovaginal pelvic color doppler ultrasound, pelvic and cerebral MRI, and abdominal/chest CT. A lung X-ray must be performed to calculate the FIGO 2000 score (International Federation of Obstetrics and Gynecology) in case of lung metastasis on CT. This score makes it possible to distinguish between low-risk GTTs (score of 6 or lower) and high-risk GTTs (score of 7 or higher). Management should be multidisciplinary and must be discussed by a panel of physicians in a specialized center. Low-risk tumors are treated by systemic single-agent chemotherapy, e.g. methotrexate (marketing authorization). High-risk tumors are treated first line with systemic multi-agent chemotherapy. Hysterectomy can of course not be considered for first-line treatment in women who wish to become pregnant, unless there is no option. Placental site trophoblastic tumors and epithelioid trophoblastic tumors are special cases: the FIGO score is not appropriate and total hysterectomy is the standard treatment as these tumors are usually chemo-resistant.

The overall recovery rate is around 99%. The prognosis is very closely related to the rapidity of diagnosis, the risk level of the tumor (low or high) and the suitability of treatment.

Visit the Orphanet disease page for more resources.


This table lists symptoms that people with this disease may have. For most diseases, symptoms will vary from person to person. People with the same disease may not have all the symptoms listed. This information comes from a database called the Human Phenotype Ontology (HPO) . The HPO collects information on symptoms that have been described in medical resources. The HPO is updated regularly. Use the HPO ID to access more in-depth information about a symptom.

Medical Terms Other Names
Learn More:
80%-99% of people have these symptoms
High maternal serum chorionic gonadotropin
Spontaneous abortion

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These resources provide more information about this condition or associated symptoms. The in-depth resources contain medical and scientific language that may be hard to understand. You may want to review these resources with a medical professional.

Where to Start

  • The National Cancer Institute provides the most current information on cancer for patients, health professionals, and the general public.

In-Depth Information

  • The Monarch Initiative brings together data about this condition from humans and other species to help physicians and biomedical researchers. Monarch’s tools are designed to make it easier to compare the signs and symptoms (phenotypes) of different diseases and discover common features. This initiative is a collaboration between several academic institutions across the world and is funded by the National Institutes of Health. Visit the website to explore the biology of this condition.
  • Orphanet is a European reference portal for information on rare diseases and orphan drugs. Access to this database is free of charge.
  • PubMed is a searchable database of medical literature and lists journal articles that discuss Gestational trophoblastic tumor. Click on the link to view a sample search on this topic.