The World’s Youngest Mother
08 Jul 2015
L ina Medina was born in September 27, 1933. A Peruvian woman who was confirmed a the youngest mother in medical history, giving birth at the age of five years, seven months and 17 days. She lives in Lima, the capital of Peru.
Medina is a daughter of a silversmith, Tiburelo Medina and Victoria Losea. Medina was brought to a hospital by her parents at the age of five years due to increasing abdominal size. She was originally thought to have had a tumor, but her doctors determined she was in her seventh month of pregnancy. Dr. Gerardo Lozada took her to Lima, Peru, to have other specialists confirm that Medina was pregnant.
A month and a half after the original diagnosis, Medina, at the age of 5 years and 7 months, gave birth to a boy by a caesarean section on May 14, 1939, necessitated by her small pelvis, which made her the youngest known person in history to give birth. The surgery was performed by Dr. Lozada and Dr. Busalleu, with Dr. Colareta providing anesthesia. When doctors performed the caesarean to deliver her baby, they found she already had fully matured sexual organs from precocious puberty. Her case was reported in detail by Dr. Edmundo Escomel in the medical journal La Presse Médicale, including the additional details that her menarche had occurred at eight months of age, in contrast to a past report stating that she had been having regular periods since she was three years old. The report also detailed that she had prominent breast development by the age of four. By age five, her figure displayed pelvic widening and advanced bone maturation.
Medina’s son weighed 2.7 kg at birth and was named Gerardo after her doctor. Gerardo was raised believing that Medina was his sister, but found out at the age of 10 that she was his mother.
Medina has never revealed the father of the child, nor the circumstances of her impregnation. Escomel suggested she might not actually know herself by writing that Medina “couldn’t give precise responses”. Although Lina’s father was arrested on suspicion of child sexual abuse, he was later released due to lack of evidence, and the biological father who impregnated Lina was never identified. Medina’s son grew up healthy and died in 1979 at the age of 40.
In 1955, except for the effects of precocious puberty, there was no explanation of how a five-year-old girl could conceive a child. Extreme precocious puberty in children aged five or under has only been documented with Medina. It is treated by suppressing fertility, which preserves growth potential and reduces the social consequences of full sexual development in childhood.
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