A Girl Reportedly Became Pregnant After Being Stabbed in Stomach Following Oral Sex. Read the Case Report

Pixabay/Public Domain
Pixabay/Public Domain

The story of a 15-year-old girl who allegedly became pregnant despite lacking a fully developed vagina has permeated the internet for many years. 

After performing fellatio on her new boyfriend, the story goes, the teenager was "caught in the act" and "stabbed in the abdomen" by her former lover. She then became pregnant.

Though the story dates back to 1988, it resurfaced in a post shared on Reddit in 2023: 

Through a Google keyword search (archive), Snopes determined that iterations of the incident have circulated in online circles since at least 2010 and have recirculated frequently in the years following

Snopes searched the National Institutes of Health PubMed database, which comprises more than 37 million citations for biomedical science literature and research. We found the story originated as an actual case report in the British Journal of Obstetrics and Gynaecology, a PDF of which can be viewed here (archive).  

The 1988 case report described a girl without a fully developed vagina who apparently become pregnant after being stabbed in the stomach following oral sex.

"A plausible explanation for this pregnancy is that spermatozoa gained access to the reproductive organs via the injured gastrointestinal tract," the authors wrote. But how exactly the sperm was able to get this "access" — for example, through drool on her belly that entered her body through the puncture wound — isn't entirely clear. Snopes reached out to the report author by email for further clarification and will update this article should we receive a response.

A case report, it should be noted, differs from peer-reviewed research studies in that it is a retrospective clinical case analysis. Case reports describe a clinical event but don't meet research criteria set forth by the Department of Health and Human Services, which are "a systematic investigation, including research development, testing and evaluation, designed to develop or contribute to generalizable knowledge." In short, this report provides anecdotal evidence but not established, peer-reviewed research. 

According to the report, a 15-year-old girl was admitted to a hospital after a knife fight ensued involving her, her former lover, and the new boyfriend. 

"Just before she was stabbed in the abdomen she had practised fellatio with her new boyfriend and was caught in the act by her former lover," wrote the report author. "Who exactly stabbed whom was not quite clear but all three participants in the small war were admitted with knife injuries." 

Doctors determined through a small exploratory incision known as a laparotomy that the girl had sustained two holes in her stomach resulting from a single stab wound. Her stomach was void of "gastric contents" at the time of surgery, so doctors rinsed the area before stitching her up. She was discharged after 10 days. 

According to experts, the median length of a human pregnancy is 280 days. The patient in question was readmitted to the hospital 278 days after the stabbing with what appeared to be labor pains. 

Upon further examination, doctors reportedly heard a fetus' heartbeat. 

Despite being in active labor, the girl didn't have a vagina, only a "shallow skin dimple," according to the case report. It's a condition known as "aplastic distal vagina," in which the vagina is closed or absent. Also known as vaginal aplasia, 1 in 5,000 live female births have the condition, which is caused by a failure of the vagina to canalize. The vaginal canal is a muscular canal that extends from the vulva, the external genitalia, to the neck of the uterus, or cervix.

The patient's uterus ended in a 2-centimeter-deep vagina, according to the report. 

"The patient was well aware of the fact that she had no vagina and she had started oral experiments after disappointing attempts at conventional intercourse," read the report, which added that her ovaries and external genitalia otherwise appeared to be normal. 

Doctors conducted an emergency C-section and delivered a healthy boy weighing just over 6 pounds. 

According to the report, the girl told doctors that she had never had a period and though "she had been worried about the increase in her abdominal size," she couldn't believe that she could be pregnant. 

Extraordinary conception aside, the reporting author speculated that the sperm gained access to the reproductive system through the punctured gastrointestinal tract. Sperm doesn't survive very long outside of the pH of the vaginal canal, but the author argued that saliva's high pH content may have helped preserve the sperm. And because her stomach was empty, the sperm would have avoided potentially harmful gastric acid. 

"The young mother, her family, and the likely father adapted themselves rapidly to the new situation and some cattle changed hands to prove that there were no hard feelings," read the report. By the time the child was 2.5 years old, he "looked very much like the legal father," which the author noted "excludes an even more miraculous conception." 

After several vaginal reconstruction attempts, the girl was eventually given a hysterectomy to provide relief from "crippling pain." 

The author of the case report, Douwe Verkuyl, a former practicing gynecologist, has been published in several reputable scientific publications, including The Lancet and PLOS Medicine. These publications listed Verkuyl's affiliations as being with both the United Bulawayo Hospitals in Zimbabwe and Bethesda Hospital in The Netherlands. 

Some publications have reported that the event transpired in South Africa, but Verkuyl's case report cited hospitals both there and in Zimbabwe.


45 CRF 46.102: Protection of Human Subjects | ORI - The Office of Research Integrity. https://ori.hhs.gov/content/chapter-3-The-Protection-of-Human-Subjects-45-crf-46102-protection-human-subjects. Accessed 8 May 2024.

Case Report Publication Guidance: IRB Review and HIPAA Compliance. https://www.hopkinsmedicine.org/institutional-review-board/guidelines-policies/guidelines/case-report. Accessed 8 May 2024.

Evaluation of Gestation: Overview, Clinical Methods of Estimating Gestational Age, Estimating the Delivery Date. Dec. 2021. eMedicine, https://emedicine.medscape.com/article/259269-overview?form=fpf.

"Friday Flashback: That's One Miraculous Conception." Discover Magazine, https://www.discovermagazine.com/the-sciences/friday-flashback-thats-one-miraculous-conception. Accessed 8 May 2024.

"How to Keep Your Vagina Healthy." Mayo Clinic, https://www.mayoclinic.org/healthy-lifestyle/womens-health/in-depth/vagina/art-20046562. Accessed 8 May 2024.

Http://Www.Ubh.Org.Zw/. http://www.ubh.org.zw/. Accessed 8 May 2024.

Kang, Jia, et al. "Clinical and Genetic Characteristics of a Cohort with Distal Vaginal Atresia." International Journal of Molecular Sciences, vol. 23, no. 21, Oct. 2022, p. 12853. PubMed Central, https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms232112853.

"Laparotomy." Cleveland Clinic, https://my.clevelandclinic.org/health/treatments/24767-laparotomy. Accessed 8 May 2024.

News, A. B. C. "Oral Sex, a Knife Fight and Then Sperm Still Impregnated Girl." ABC News, https://abcnews.go.com/Health/Wellness/teen-girl-vagina-pregnant-sperm-survival-oral-sex/story?id=9732562. Accessed 8 May 2024.

"The Girl Who Got Pregnant After Being Stabbed In The Abdomen Following Oral Sex." IFLScience, 11 May 2021, https://www.iflscience.com/the-girl-who-got-pregnant-after-being-stabbed-in-the-abdomen-following-oral-sex-59662.

"---." IFLScience, 11 May 2021, https://www.iflscience.com/the-girl-who-got-pregnant-after-being-stabbed-in-the-abdomen-following-oral-sex-59662.

Vagina Aplasia - an Overview | ScienceDirect Topics. https://www.sciencedirect.com/topics/medicine-and-dentistry/vagina-aplasia. Accessed 8 May 2024.

Verkuyl, D. A. "Oral Conception. Impregnation via the Proximal Gastrointestinal Tract in a Patient with an Aplastic Distal Vagina. Case Report." British Journal of Obstetrics and Gynaecology, vol. 95, no. 9, Sept. 1988, pp. 933–34. PubMed, https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1471-0528.1988.tb06583.x.

Verkuyl, Douwe A. A. "Oral Conception. Impregnation via the Proximal Gastrointestinal Tract in a Patient with an Aplastic Distal Vagina. Case Report." BJOG: An International Journal of Obstetrics & Gynaecology, vol. 95, no. 9, Sept. 1988, pp. 933–34. DOI.org (Crossref), https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1471-0528.1988.tb06583.x.

Verkuyl, Douwe Arie Anne. "Think Globally Act Locally: The Case for Symphysiotomy." PLoS Medicine, vol. 4, no. 3, Mar. 2007, p. e71. PubMed, https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pmed.0040071.

---. "Think Globally Act Locally: The Case for Symphysiotomy." PLOS Medicine, vol. 4, no. 3, Mar. 2007, p. e71. PLoS Journals, https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pmed.0040071.

Woman Impregnated without Vagina Stab Wounds - Google Search. https://www.google.com/search?q=woman+impregnated+without+vagina+stab+wounds&oq=woman+impregnated+without+vagina+stab+wounds&gs_lcrp=EgZjaHJvbWUyBggAEEUYOdIBCDcyNjlqMGo3qAIAsAIA&sourceid=chrome&ie=UTF-8#ip=1. Accessed 8 May 2024.