Doctors Found A 60-year-old Mummified, 'Stone Baby' Inside A 91-Year-old Woman!

Doctors Found A 60-year-old Mummified, ‘Stone Baby’ Inside A 91-Year-old Woman!

Imagine the shock and confusion in learning that there is a stone-hard, mummified baby inside a living breathing human for six decades. This was the reality for 91-year-old Estela Meléndez from La Boca, Chile. She had an accidental fall and was rushed to take an X-ray. To her and everyone’s surprise, the doctors found a stone-hard, calcified fetus lodged within her for 60 years! This occurs due to a rare natural phenomenon called “lithopedion” or “Stone baby syndrome.” Let’s dive deeper to learn how is it possible for a baby to go mummified inside a human body and stay there for decades.

“Can you imagine? More than 60 years! I wonder how she never felt bad once the foetus died inside of her. ”

Ms Melendez’s nephew Luis Melendez told the television station.

A Mummified Baby Resting For 60 Years Inside The Body!

The coastal village of La Boca, Chile became the stage for a shocking medical revelation. Estela Meléndez who fell accidentally was taken to the hospital for examination and several X-ray investigations were conducted to examine the growth in her body. Initially, the growth was suspected to be a tumor and the doctors were gearing up for a surgical procedure. However, a second X-ray brought everyone to a standstill. A mummified stone baby was resting within her!

60-year-old Mummified Stone Baby
Image source: Daily express

The supposed tumor was a calcified fetus. An ectopic pregnancy (A fetus growing outside the uterus) causes the fetus to die and since it is too big for the body to reabsorb, it calcifies within. This process protects the mother’s body from the dead tissue of the fetus and stops infection.
Doctors decided to avoid surgery, considering Estela’s age. The risks far outweighed the potential benefits.

Estela’s case wasn’t just a shock to the medical community. It was a heartwarming moment of reflection upon her own life. Estella was married to her late husband Manuel González for about 74 years. They shared the dream of having a child. Their shared dream of having a family never came to reality. This discovery triggered Estela and her husband’s unfulfilled desires.

“We suffered tremendously because of this reason.”

Estella Mendez

Understanding Lithopedion: The Stone Baby Syndrome

Lithopedion comes from the Greek words for ‘stone’ and ‘child.’ The condition refers to an incredibly rare condition where a fetus, unable to develop normally, undergoes a calcification process within the mother’s body. This biological defense mechanism serves to protect the mother while effectively mummifying the fetus into a stone-like state.

Historically, there are fewer than 300 such cases. The presence of a lithopedion is usually not diagnosed until the calcified fetus is stumbled upon incidentally. This is because it presents only a few symptoms or pain in most instances.

60-year-old Mummified Stone Baby
Image source: The Sun / Reddit


Estela Meléndez’s story is a testament to the exceptional defenses crafted by the human body and its preservative instincts. As we close this chapter, pondering the curious bond between natural mysteries and individual narratives, let us bear witness to the confluence of nature’s enigmas.

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