Lina Medina: The 5-year-old Mother

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Lina Medina was born on September 27, 1933, in the village of Ticrapo, Peru. A little over five years later, Lina was to become a world-famous celebrity. Lina Medina is the youngest documented mother in human history, giving birth at the age of five.

Lina was born with a rare condition called "precocious puberty." Precocious puberty is basically the early onset of sexual development. Most girls begin experiencing puberty around the age of ten (boys usually start a little later, around the ages of 11 or 12). Lina had experienced her first menstrual cycle at the age of eight months, although erroneous contemporary reports stated that the event occurred at the age of two and a half or three. She had fully developed breasts by the age of four.  

At five, she experienced a widening of her pelvis and had advanced bone maturation. It was at the age of five that Lina's midsection started growing massively. Her mother, Victoria, thought that her daughter was possessed by evil spirits. When she brought Lina to a hospital to be examined, the initial diagnosis was a possible tumor.

It was soon discovered, to the great shock and surprise of all, that she was actually eight months pregnant. When doctors did a full examination of Lina, they found that, although she was only five years old, she had fully mature sexual organs.

Dr. Geraldo Lozada became Lina's attending doctor, fully taking over the case. Dr. Lozada took Lina to a more advanced hospital in Lima to confirm the pregnancy diagnosis. The diagnosis was confirmed.

On May 14, 1939, a month and a half after the diagnosis, Lina gave birth to a healthy, 6-pound son. Because of the small size of the mother's pelvis, the baby was delivered by caesarean section. Thus, at the age of five years, seven months, and 17 days, Lina Medina became the youngest human female on record to give birth to a child. By an odd coincidence, the birth occurred on Mothers Day in 1939.

The boy was named Geraldo in honor of Lina's doctor. Geraldo was to lead a healthy life until he developed a bone marrow disease, which led to his death at age 40 in 1979. Geraldo grew up believing that Lina was his sister. Finally, at the age of ten, the boy was told his mother's true identity.        

Lina has never revealed the father of her child or the circumstances of the conception. After Lina's condition was discovered, her father was arrested and jailed on suspicion of rape and incest. He was later released due to lack of evidence.

Dr. Edmundo Escomel, a preeminent physician who thoroughly researched Lina's case, has suggested that Lina herself may not know what happened. Obviously, Lina's age (four at the time of conception) would be a contributing factor to her lack of memory. Although nothing of the child's conception is known, it is certain that the event must have been a great shock to young Lina and would surely have been, at least to some extent, traumatic. Dr. Escomel has also revealed that when Lina was originally interviewed about her condition, "she was unable to give precise responses."

Some have pointed out that the fact that there were frequent festivities celebrated by Indians in Andean villages like the one where Lina was born. These often ended up in orgies in which rape was not uncommon.

In her young adulthood, Lina worked as a secretary at Dr. Lozada's Lima clinic. The doctor had provided for Lina's education, and also helped put her son through school.

Lina later married Raul Jurado and bore a second child in 1972. As of 2002, the couple were living in a poor district of Lima known as "Chicago Chico" (Little Chicago). Lina has refused any and all public interviews about her unique story through the years and has continued her silence regarding the matter to this day.

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