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Group B Strep and Home Birth?

Forum: Home Birth


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January 30th, 2007, 01:36 AM
bubblesispreggers's Avatar Mega Super Mommy
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Does your midwife test you for this or do you even get tested? If you are positive for Group B Strep, does that mean you need a hospital birth? I found a few things about this on the "Home Birth Reference Site" but its based on stuff from the UK (they also said there are higher numbers of cases in the US or something to that effect). I guess I just want to know if/when I should get tested and what it means if I come back positive.



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January 30th, 2007, 08:33 AM
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I actually see a group of homebirth doctors. And they do not test for GBS. In one of my previous hospital births, I actually tested positive and despite antibiotics given during labor, my newborn had to stay in the NICU for a week because she showed signs of infection. Actually, she was fine and they were being overly cautious.

Anyway, because of that I was worried about being GBS positive at the homebirth, but the doctor said testing was not necessary and that they dont' do antibiotics at homebirths anyway. Instead he gave me a diet to follow for the last few weeks of the pg and said they would watch baby carefully for signs of infection. Of course, everything turned out fine. I wasn't tested for the next birth either and all was well.

I don't know what the case is for all homebirth midwives or doctors, but that is how mine do it. You would have to ask your midwife what her policy is regarding GBS. Either way, if you take precautions beforehand and she knows what to look for at the birth to make sure all is well with baby, then I'm sure everything would be fine.
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January 30th, 2007, 09:01 AM
LaLa's Avatar Platinum Supermommy
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Ill preface this by saying there is quite a debate on GBS & treating it with antibiotics. Mainly, b/c antibiotics isnt proven to TREAT GBS or prevent passing it - rather its supposed to basically give the newborn antibiotics so that when theyre born it can help fight it if they acquire it during delivery. HOWEVER, they usually test somewhere in the last 3 weeks of pg, which means NOTHING. You can test positive & be negative at time of delivery, or even test negative and then be positive at time of delivery. Personally i dont see the point of testing except to find a wy to charge for it.

The big problem is that when a mother does test negative, a lot of providers, nurses, and the mom usually assume all is well. And so when baby does exhibit signs everyone acts like its a big surprise.

In a homebirth or birthign center, many MWs dont even test. They will assume the patient is GBS positive & will treat for risk factors. Risk factors being: Prolonged rupture of membranes, prolonged pushing stage, or signs of infection. And - they do not always treat with antibiotics. Most MWs Ive heard of use Hybecleanse (sp?). Supposedly, from what I understand, this actually rids the vaginal area of GBS, unlike IV antibiotic treatment. Its a rinse, I believe.

All babies are watched closely for signs of GBS transmission & treated accordingly. Unlike a hospital setting where they usually keep their closest eyes on the babies of GBS positive mothers.

I hope that makes sense lol. For some reason, I had a really hard time typing out my thoughts this morning lol.


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January 30th, 2007, 09:23 AM
bubblesispreggers's Avatar Mega Super Mommy
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Oh, this sounds great! I'm still waiting to hear from my doula/CPM but I will ask her along with my 89072935017 other questions. LOL



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January 31st, 2007, 07:46 AM
Butter's Avatar Heather the Mama Duk
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Location: San Antonio TX
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My midwife doesn't test for it but watches the baby afterwards instead. The only case of GBS in a baby I have ever known was a baby born to a mom withOUT GBS at 36 weeks.

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