GROUP B STREPTOCOCCOS
1 out 10 healthy women have GBS living (or colonized) in their vaginas.
Before using antibiotics during labor as a preventative measure about 2.5 out of 100 women with GBS would have a baby that would develop a serious infection.
Out of those babies, 4% would have died.
So statistically: women with “colonized” GBS would have lost a child or 4 to 8 per 10,000.
Those few who survived had neurological damage.
Odds are reduced with full-term pregnancy, most were premature that developed GBS.
The solution would seem to be to test for GBS early in the pregnancy, and take the antibiotics at the time. This often does not work. This is due to the GBS reappearing after the course of antibiotics is done.
The Center for Disease Control Recommends:
• Screening at 35-37 weeks of pregnancy
• Give all women with colonized GBS IV antibiotics while in labor
• Or, if the status of GBS is unknown at birth, and the risk factors are present, give the IV antibiotics.
A baby born to a GBS positive mother does not need antibiotic treatment if the baby shows no signs of infection and is at least 35 week gestational age, and the mother began antibiotics at least four hours prior to birBut the baby should have blood cultures done.
If the mother has received antibiotic treatment due to a suspected uterine infection or baby shows any signs of an infection, the baby should receive a full septic work-up, including a spinal tap and antibiotic therapy.
Cases of newborn infections have declined since the introduction of testing routinely and treatment since the 90s.
The downside is that some cases of severe allergy occurred from the antibiotics. Although GBS strains have not seemed to develop resistance to penicillin, they have to other antibiotics.