Choriocarcinoma: What You Need to Know About This Rare Cancer

Choriocarcinoma About

and Health

Choriocarcinoma is a rare form of cancer. It is a malignant tumor that forms in the cells of the developing placenta during pregnancy. Choriocarcinoma can also be found in the testes and ovaries. While this cancer is rare, it is important to recognize the symptoms to receive early diagnosis and treatment. Here is what you need to know about choriocarcinoma and health.

Overview of Choriocarcinoma

Choriocarcinoma is a rare cancer with fewer than 1,000 cases diagnosed in the US each year. It is most commonly found in pregnant women, although it can develop in both men and women of any age. The cancer begins in the cells of the placenta, but can also occur in the ovaries, testes and other organs. Symptoms of choriocarcinoma can include:

  • Abnormal vaginal bleeding
  • Unexpected weight gain
  • Swollen abdomen
  • Fatigue
  • Difficulty breathing

Diagnosis and Treatment

If you experience any of the symptoms above, it is important to see your doctor right away. Choriocarcinoma can be diagnosed with a variety of tests, such as imaging and biopsies. Depending on the stage of the cancer, treatment options range from surgery to radiation and chemotherapy.


Surgery is an effective treatment for choriocarcinoma if it is found early enough. The cancerous cells can be removed, and the surrounding tissue can be tested for cancerous cells.

Radiation and Chemotherapy

Radiation therapy and chemotherapy can also be used to treat choriocarcinoma. Radiation is usually used to destroy the cancer cells, while chemotherapy is used to kill any remaining cancer cells. Both treatments can be combined to maximize effectiveness.


It is important to be aware of the symptoms of choriocarcinoma, and seek medical attention if any of them are present. When pregnant, it is also important to visit your doctor regularly to monitor your health and the health of your unborn child.


Choriocarcinoma is a rare form of cancer, but it is important to be aware of the symptoms and to seek professional medical help if any of them are present. Early diagnosis and treatment can lead to better outcomes and improved quality of life.

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