Prognosis and survival for gestational trophoblastic disease

If you have gestational trophoblastic disease (GTD), you may have questions about your prognosis. A prognosis is the doctor’s best estimate of how cancer will affect someone and how it will respond to treatment. Prognosis and survival depend on many factors. Only a doctor familiar with your medical history, the type, stage and other features of the cancer, the treatments chosen and the response to treatment can put all of this information together with survival statistics to arrive at a prognosis.

A prognostic factor is an aspect of the cancer or a characteristic of the person that the doctor will consider when making a prognosis. A predictive factor influences how a cancer will respond to a certain treatment. Prognostic and predictive factors are often discussed together. They both play a part in deciding on a treatment plan and a prognosis.

The World Health Organization (WHO) prognostic score is an important part of deciding on a treatment plan and a prognosis for GTD. Low-risk GTD often responds well to treatment and tends to have a good prognosis even if a tumour has spread. High-risk GTD may be less responsive to treatment and may require more aggressive chemotherapy.

In general, all women with non-metastatic, low-risk GTD have an excellent survival rate, and all women are cured. Women with metastatic, low-risk GTD or non-metastatic, high-risk GTD also have a good prognosis. Even with faster growing GTD, cure rates are still 80% to 90% with intensive treatment, which will probably include combination chemotherapy and radiation therapy with or without surgery.

Expert review and references

  • American Cancer Society . Gestational Trophoblastic Disease . 2014 :
  • American Society of Clinical Oncology . Gestational Trophoblastic Disease . 2014 :
  • Goldstein DP, Berkowitz RS, Horowitz NS . Gestational trophoblastic diseases. DeVita VT Jr, Lawrence TS, Rosenberg SA. Cancer: Principles and Practice of Oncology. 10th ed. Philadelphia: Wolters Kluwer Health/Lippincott Williams & Wilkins; 2015: 75: 1069-1074.

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