Little Lina lived with her father, mother and eight siblings in Antacancha, 450 kilometres east of Lima, the capital of Peru. The shamans in the village became concerned about her belly getting bigger and bigger and asked her father, Tiburcio's permission to perform an exorcism to get rid of "the snake under her belly". Permission was granted and the ritual was performed. However this did not have the desired effect and her parents started believing that she was gravely ill with a tumor growing in her stomach.
They then travelled the 70 kilometres to the town of Pisco to Dr Gerardo Lozada who took charge of Lina's preliminary tests. He immediately noticed the size of her stomach and also thought that it might be a tumor. However, after evaluating her clinical tests many times and with the scientific thoroughness required by the circumstances, he declared Lina to be 8 months pregnant. He immediately informed the police who in turn immediately arrested her father, as the prime suspect of having sired the baby. He was soon released though as no there was no evidence against him. One of Lina's siblings, a mentally disabled, 9 year old, brother was then suspected of fathering the baby but this also could not be proven.
Lina Medina (5 years old and 8 months pregnant)Dr Lozada admitted the pregnant girl to a clinic in Lima and sent someone to Antacancha to investigate the situation and circumstances there. He came back with the information that family members confirmed that even before Lina was 4 years old, her breasts had already started developing, she had pubic hair and she had started menstruating.
There was nothing to be done at such a late stage in the pregnancy but to prepare for the imminent birth of the baby. On 14 May 1939, fittingly on Mother's Day, Lina's 2,7 kg, 48 cm tall, baby was born by cesarean section. Dr Busalleu was the surgeon and Dr Colretta the anaesthesiologist. The baby boy was named Gerardo after Dr Lozada.
The news of this unprecedented medical event spread like wildfire and it even minimised the relevance of preparations for World War II for a couple of days. Lina and her baby stayed in the maternity clinic for a period of 11 months during which time she learned to read and write. The story has it that her family refused all offers of using the girl and her baby for financial gain, but was willing to sign an agreement with the Seltzer Compamy to study the case. However, Oscar Benavides, president of Peru at the time, enacted a law on the tutelage of Lina and her son under the promise of a grant for life for both. They never received on penny of this grant.
Lina's parents brought little Gerardo up as Lina's brother but when he was 10 years old, he learned the truth about his birth. Unfortunately he died at the age of 40 from a bone marrow disease. (It had no connection with his unusual gestation or birth).
As a young adult, she worked as a secretary for Dr Lozada, who saw to her being educated and who also helped her to put Gerardo through high school.
At the age of 33, Lina married Raul Jurado and spent her married life in "Chicago Chico", a very poor suburb of Lima. In 1972 she gave birth to another son. During the 80's her house was demolished to make way for a highway and she did not receive any compensation whatsoever.
After almost 70 years it is still a mistery as to who fathered Gerardo. Lina and her husband still lives in poverty and it was reported in the "El Pais" journal that she has only one ambition: to obtain compensation from her government for the house they demolished.
Most of the information used in this post was found at the blog of Iron Queen and at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lina_Medina.
(Quoted from Wikipedia: "Extreme precocious puberty in children 5 or under is very uncommon; pregnancy and delivery by a child this young remains extremely rare. Extreme precocious puberty is treated to suppress fertility, preserve growth potential, and reduce the social consequences of full sexual development in childhood.)