Adding to the increasing number of ‘girl’ moms, a young Colombian girl who is just 10 years old gave birth to a baby girl via C-section.
The girl is from Manaure, a town in the Colombian Department of La Guajira. She came to the hospital crying and with unbearable contraction pain. The baby was delivered via caesarean section and weighed 5 pounds.
For girls as young as this, normal delivery are difficult doctors say.
“The baby’s head needs to come through a bony outlet. But in a young girl, the pelvis may not be ready or big enough to deliver a baby,” said Dr. Kimberly Gecsi, an OB/GYN at UH Case Medical Center in Cleveland.
According to Dr. Frederick Gonzalez, a clinical professor of obstetrics and gynecology at NYU Langone Medical Center these girls are also prone to pregnancy related high blood pressure known as preeclampsia.
“These girls are not ready to be pregnant. Their bodies are not mature,” said Gonzalez. “They may be able to get pregnant, but being able to have a baby is a whole other situation.”
The girl belongs to an indigenous tribe Wayuu people, in northern Colombia. The father is unknown but because the tribe has its own jurisdiction, police cannot press charges.
“We’ve already seen several cases [of pregnancy] in girls of the Wayuu ethnicity,” Efraín Pacheco Casadiego, director of the hospital where the girl gave birth, “when in fact [the girls] should be playing with dolls, they are having to care for a baby. This is shocking.”
Pregnancy among girls may occur as soon as they start ovulating. In fact in some cases the pregnancy may even occur before the girl starts her menstrual cycle as ovulation occurs before the periods.
“The average age girls in the country start menstruating is about 12 and a half, but that age keeps dropping,” said Gecsi, adding that the age is even lower among Hispanic girls. ”But only about 13 percent of Hispanic girls menstruate younger than 11. And for them to have a sexual experience would be very unusual.”
The expert also advised that before ovulation starts in any young girl, there are also other bodily changes that occur like growth and development of breast and pubic hair.
“Typically, menstruation is the last thing that happens in puberty,” said Gesci, “If you notice those things, you could be about to menstruate and you could get pregnant.”
This little girl now has to skip her own childhood and become a mom to her baby girl, something she shouldn’t have had to worry about for at least 10 years.