Anyway, here are some quick facts about B Strep.
What is B Strep?
Group B streptococcus (GBS) is a bacterium that can be found in the digestive tract, urinary tract, and genital area of adults. - University of Rochester Medical Center.
- A normal bacteria, naturally found in the digestive tract and birth canal in up to 1 in 4 pregnant women.Group B Strep International
- Not sexually transmitted North Carolina Women's Hospital
- For every 1000 GBS positive mothers, one or two babies will become infected and need treatment. Group B Strep International
- Typically causes no symptoms for adults, but may cause urinary tract infections.
- No vaccine, treatment options (outside of antibiotics during labor), or way to avoid contracting this widespread bacteria. University of Maryland Medical Center
- Once you test positive, you will be considered positive for life, even though it can come and go.
B Strep & Pregnancy
Although 99% of infants who come in contact with GBS during the birth process do not become ill, those who do can develop severe, life-threatening complications. Fortunately, treatment is available.University of Maryland Medical Center.B Strep can be life threatening to infant during prenatal development up to about 6 months of age, though most (if infected by GBS) develop symptoms by three weeks of age. Some of the more serious effects of an infant contracting GBS are meningitis or pneumonia. Infants who become infected with meningitis can have other long-term health effects, so it's important to be aware of the signs and symptoms for GBS infection in infants and to take all precautions (such as receiving your GBS test around 35 weeks pregnant and getting Penicillin during labor, prior to delivery).
Symptoms of GBS in Infants
- High-pitched cry, shrill moaning, whimpering
- Marked irritability, inconsolable crying
- Constant grunting as if constipated
- Projectile vomiting
- High or low or unstable temperature; hands and feet may still feel cold even with a fever
- Blotchy, red, or tender skin
- Blue, gray, or pale skin due to lack of oxygen
- Lower picture is of the same baby with cardiovascular shock-induced pallor due to late-onset GBS disease
- Fast, slow, or difficult breathing
- Body stiffening, uncontrollable jerking
- Listless, floppy, or not moving an arm or leg
- Tense or bulgy spot on top of head
- Blank stare
- Infection at base of umbilical cord or in puncture on head from internal fetal monitor
- Excessive sleepiness
- Trouble breathing
- Refuses two feedings in a row
I hope that, after reading this, you feel more informed about GBS and can be aware of the importance of prenatal testing and treatment during labor. I have no intention of causing panic or of claiming expertise in the matter, but I think it's always better to be informed!
You can click the orange links to read more about GBS or to see where I got my information from. Once again, I'm not an expert on the subject. If you know someone this might affect, please share!