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A 34-year-old member asked:

Can you tell me if a pregnant woman gets cancer, is the fetus's cells immune from getting cancer, too?

1 doctor answer1 doctor weighed in
Dr. Lauren Stegman
Radiation Oncology 27 years experience
Possibly: The placenta may stop cancer cells in the mother's blood from going to the fetus. A fetus's developing immune system may also kill cancer cells that cross the placenta. However, there are cases of cancer spreading from a mother to the fetus. I recently treated a mother and child with metastatic melanoma. It was discovered during mom's pregnancy and her child got the disease too.

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Last updated Apr 6, 2013

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