BTDT Moms - Group b Strep?
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May 10th, 2007, 07:14 AM
Join Date: Jun 2005
I had a homebirth, but even in the event of a hospital birth I was opting OUT of the test. In my opinion the test is a bunch of crap and tells you absolutely nothing.
Colonization (testing positive) can happen one minute, and you test negative the next. A test at 37, 38, 39 or even 40 weeks tells you NOTHING about your status at delivery.
Moreso... should you be positive at delivery (which they wont know your true status at delivery regardless of your status weeks prior), risk of infection comes to play when :
1) your water is broken for a prolonged period of time (24+ hours)
2) your water is ruptured artificially (something not done in a homebirth,and Id decline at a hospital)
3) vaginal exams aree done after your water is broken (not done in a homebirth, and I would be refusing them at a hospital birth)
4) Prolonged pushing stage (3 or 4+ hours)
In this case - you can treat for risk factors. Admin antibiotics, which arent really effective. They dont actually prevent transmission of GBS, but instead you getting the antibiotics gets the antibiotics into the babys system (which has its own set of risks), and the hope is that it will minimize the effects of GBS on the baby.
HOWEVER, the ONE person I knew whose baby actually had GBS tested negative for it. She presented all the risk factors: water broken artificially, prolonged rupture, vaginal exams after rupture, prolonged pushing stage... and guess what they did? Nothing. The hospital negligently assumed since she tested negative, no worries, despite the FACT that her negative status means nothing at birth. Baby did have GBS, spent 10 days in the hospital on antibiotics, and mom had to go home without her baby. To make matters worse, she was pumpign milk and arrived one day to find them giving her baby someone else's breastmilk! They never informed the other mom of the switch, refused to test the other mom for her to ensure there were no concerns, etc.
It was a mess.
So anyways - there is another option for treating for risk factors and that is Hybicleanse. Hybicleanse is supposed to actually kill GBS in the vaginal area to prevent transmission. In fact, in a lot of European countries they dont use antibiotics, they use Hybicleanse - it has fewer risks and at least as good if not better efficiency.
So - you may want to consider declining and asking what your MW woudl do should risk factors present. IF in fact your baby has GBS, yes it is a concern and at its worst be very dangerous. It is something too that you would be able to say "ok, I had risk factors for GBS, my baby is presenting signs of GBS, lets go to the hospital". IMO, theres no need to deliver at the hospital if there is a small minute risk of something - the risk of your baby actually getting GBS is very small, even if you are positive at birth, and in normal situations for anything else that has a risk that small you likely wouldnt opt for a hospital birth.
Just realize too - that GBS is a fairly new discovery in the scope of all things. Testing for it wasnt always done. And it is pretty uncommon and when it a baby is infected, the risk factors are almost always there.
So you may want to consider as another option to decline the test, and then treat for risk factors rather than screw up your chances for a homebirth over somethign that will likely never be an issue, and for a test that doesnt tell you anything about your birth status. I mean heck - You drawing a piece of paper out of a hat is just as accurate
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