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Talk to me about group strep b.

(6 Posts)
PrammyMammy Thu 06-Aug-09 23:44:16

I am 35 weeks pregnant and today my midwife told me i was 'group strep b' and it had come back from a test taken at 16 weeks (19 weeks ago)!
Anyway she wrote this in my notes and told me not to worry about anything ( i wasn't because i don't know what it is) and not to search it on the net or i would scare myself (!) and gave me a support line number. But she never actually explained it, or told me why i would worry or anything.
When i go into labour i have to call the hosp and go in straight away so i can be put on an antibiotic drip to stop the baby being infected. But i didn't have to do this with my ds, who is 20 mo. So is it something you just develop, or was it over looked last time?
I asked my mum and she didn't know, so here i am hoping someone can fill me in. This doesn't count as searching the net though..does it?
Thank you

Picante Fri 07-Aug-09 09:02:05

Ok, first of all your midwife is a loon. grin

Group B Strep is a bacterial infection found in about a quarter of women at any one time.

It comes and goes. The fact that you tested positive at 16 weeks means absolutely nothing.

The best time to take a test is around 37 weeks, but this is not provided by the NHS mainly due to cost. You can get the test sent to you privately, it costs around £35.

If you are still positive at 37 weeks, then yes, if you want, you can have intravenous anti-biotics during labour to prevent the baby catching GBS.

GBS can be serious in a new born baby. However you need to weigh everything up and decide for yourself whether you want the anti-biotics or not. I believe the abs gave me very bad thrush in my breasts and caused me to give up bf ds 3 years ago.

I'm now 39 weeks with number 2 and tested positive a couple of weeks ago. I want a homebirth and have decided against the abs. This has been a hard decision for me but I've weighed up the risks.

There are things you can do to help you get a negative test result, including sticking a garlic clove up your vagina overnight!

You may well have been positive last time, a quarter of women are.

Here are some links - non-scary!!

Group B Strep help site

Some natural ways to combat infection

Some more

Magic garlic!

Hope that's been helpful.

PrammyMammy Fri 07-Aug-09 11:39:59

Thank you for replying. Thought i was going to have to google it today.
So, it's just an infection, and i can decide not to go into the hospital as soon as my contractions start (that would make such a long labour).
Are there no symptoms? How come i didn't know and it took them 19 weeks to notice.
Lol at garlic cloves. Wonder if it works.
I am off to read your links, and iwill start with the garlic one.
Thank you .

Babybee2 Fri 07-Aug-09 12:11:54

Hello, thought I'd let you know what I know about Strep B (GBS) Its something many women have, and yes it does come and go in pregnancy thats why screening can be worthless, you could have a negative test at 30 weeks and b positive by delivery!

Every hospital has a very different policy on how to treat it, some will give every women intravenous antibiotics which is very invasive and some hospital wont give anything at all! serious infections to babies from GBS can happen but are very rare.

When your waters are still intact then the bacteria cant get to the baby so coming into hospital as soon as you start contracting might be a bit over the top, most women are much more relaxed in there own environment!

Your midwife should have given you the information you need so that you can make a choice about what you would like to do, the internet can be a frightening place to read information!!

There are no symptoms that you are a carrier for GBS, but if you become unwell raised temp, fever etc it could be a sign that you have an infection so its best to get checked out especially if you think your waters may have broken.

Hope this is helpful

PrammyMammy Fri 07-Aug-09 12:57:45

Thanks babybee,

My midwife told me it was nothing to worry about, and i would have just took her word for it if she didn't say not to look it up on the net.

My labour with ds was quick, my waters broke ane he came 2 hours later. So if the same happens again, will there be time for antibiotics?
Can it be passed on in Bf?
I have a waterbirth planned, can i still have it?

I'll make a list of questions and ask my midwife everything at my next visit.

Zuzi Fri 07-Aug-09 14:47:35

PrammyMammy, it depends on your hospital policy. Where I live, if you don't have enough time to have the first major dose and the baby comes, they automatically treat the baby with antibiotics via cannulla. As a preventative measure.

Also, in this hospital, you cannot have a waterbirth because they don't deem someone with a cannula in their hand as low risk. Unfortunately, because this is really really something I wanted to happen again (I had one waterbirth already).

Speak to your midwife / hospital, they'll be able to advise of their policies. Fingers crossed for you.

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