Motherhood is something that almost every woman has experienced or is acquainted with during her course of life. The state of ‘motherhood’ implies that the young girl or woman is ready to create, nurture and protect a new life. Ordinarily such a phase comes about when the female has attained or is over the age of 18 but what if a girl gives birth not at the age of 18 nor at 14 but at the tender age of 5! Yes, This shocking birth did take place in Peru to a girl named Lina Medina, the youngest confirmed mother in medical history. This is her story…
Lina Medina was born on September 27,1933 in Ticrapo, Peru.
The village, located 7,400 feet up in the mountains is the poorest region in the nation. She was one of the nine children of her parents Tiburelo Medina, a silversmith, and Victoria Losea.
Apart from the fact that Lina Medina had her first periods at the age of two and half years, she was normal in every other way. But at the age of five, her parents noticed her stomach increasing. They took her to local Shaman but no cure was found.
There were no modern facilities to determine the cause of the growth. Her parents believed that the increasing size of Lina Medina’s stomach was due to a tumor and hoped it would heal itself. But when her tummy continued to grow, the concerned parents took her to a hospital in Pisco, Peru. The doctors discovered that she was in the seventh month of her pregnancy.
Dr. Gerardo Lozada discovered that Lina Medina had fully developed (mature) mammary glands and reproductive parts. On investigation, it came to light that Medina had started her menarche at the age of two and half years. However, a detailed examination showed that Lina was menstruating since she was 8-month-old!
The Doctors at Pisco were stunned by the pregnancy and would not pass up the opportunity to study the medical miracle.
They took X-rays of her uterus, conducted hormonal and various other tests to re-confirm the pregnancy. A detailed investigation revealed that Lina was seven months pregnant. The doctors were perplexed as to how a five-year-old could get pregnant. Dr.Gerardo got her shifted to a hospital in Lima, Peru where she was kept under constant observation.
A month and a half after her transfer to Lima’s hospital, Lina Medina gave birth to a healthy boy by Cesarean section on May 14, 1939.
Medina’s young age of 5 years meant that she would have a small pelvis , hence the C-section. The baby was named Gerardo after the doctor who diagnosed her. The child was raised believing that Medina was his sister. But Gerardo came to know the truth at the age of 10.
Medina never revealed the father of her child or the circumstances surrounding her impregnation. Suspicion fell on her father, and he was arrested on the suspicion of rape and incest.
But he was released due to lack of evidence and the biological father of Gerardo was never found. Gerardo died in 1979 at the age of 40. Medina worked as a secretary to Dr. Gerardo Lozado in Lima. Later she married Raúl Jurado and delivered her second son in 1972.