Giving birth could literally save your life.
Studies have shown that fetal stem cells can and do pass into the mother’s body where they can persist for years and may even assist in healing injuries to the mother’s organs.
A 1996 study in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences found that in humans, genetically distinct cells from a male fetus persisted in the mother’s body as long as 27 years after birth.
And a 2015 study suggested that fetal cells may actually heal maternal organs! Researchers tagged mice with a fluorescent protein that allowed the researchers to trace the flow of the fetus’s stem cells from the mother’s placenta into its heart while they induced cardiac injury to the mother.
They found that fetal stem cells in mice directly targeted the damaged cardiac cells and fully integrated themselves into the mother’s heart. There is a wide body of research that suggests similar phenomena could occur in humans.