Placental findings in specific newborn/fetal or maternal conditions
Blighted ovum

Topic Completed: 1 October 2011

Minor changes: 19 February 2019

Copyright: 2002-2019,, Inc.

PubMed Search: Blighted ovum placenta

Mandolin S. Ziadie, M.D.
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Cite this page: Ziadie MS. Blighted ovum. website. Accessed September 24th, 2020.
Definition / general
  • Failure of development or early embryonic demise with persistent trophoblast development, leading to an anembryonic gestation
Microscopic (histologic) description
  • Villous stromal edema without central cistern formation or trophoblastic hyperplasia
  • Features of karyotypic abnormalities may be present
  • 52% are trisomic (smaller villi without cisterns), 20% are triploid (resemble partial moles with focal trophoblastic invaginations, cisterns, irregular surfaces and dysmorphic features) and 15% are XO and 6% are tetraploid
  • Before week 8, aneuploidy is most common with embryonic growth disorganization
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