The recent news about a one-year old baby in Delhi reaching puberty shed light on the rare condition that is ‘precocious puberty’ – where a child’s body develops beyond his or her years to exhibit all the features of a pubescent adolescent.
And in 1939, this very condition led a young girl of five years and seven months in Peru to give birth to a baby boy – making her the youngest mother in recorded history.
Lina Medina, born in Ticrapo in Peru, was brought in to the doctor’s office due to abdominal swelling with her parents under the impression that it was a tumour. It was discovered then that Lina was over seven months pregnant.
Dr. Gerardo Lozada observed that the girl’s mammary glands and sexual organs were fully developed as well. A baby boy was delivered through a C-section on May 14, 1939 and named Gerardo after Lina’s doctor.
Young Gerardo grew up under the impression that Lina was his elder sister, and discovered her true identity when he was 10. What’s more, he led a normal, healthy life until in 1979, when bone marrow disease claimed his life at 40 years of age.
Police arrested Lina’s father on suspicions of incest and rape, but he was later released due to lack of evidence. The identity of Gerardo’s father was never determined.
Lina’s story has been questioned by many along the years, but X-rays, photographs and detailed hospital documentation are proof of this hard-to-believe story.
And believe it or not, this is the truth behind the world’s youngest mother.