What do you all think about the GBS test? This is one thing I haven’t done much research on. What are the benefits to this test? I read a little on it but was wondering if anyone had personal experience?

THE RESPONSES:

  • I didn’t have it with DD. I simply assumed I was positive. I made my own protocol then (I’d take a shot of bacillus if I’d SROM’d for 36 hours with no onset of labor). I did all my research at the midwife archives. http://www.gentlebirth.org/archives/
  • I did some research for my aunt last year and basically it’s the new ‘in’ thing to test for. It’s notoriously inaccurate, you can test positive one week and negative the next. 50% of babies who end up in NICU with GBS infection had mothers who tested negative. Um, I’m trying to think what else I can remember off the top of my head (since my computer is in shambles thanks to df and I can’t dig it all up!) If you do test positive, most care providers insist on IV antibiotics, even though this hasn’t been totally proven to prevent infection. In mothers who are infected, I believe the rate of infection in baby is 1 per 200. I could be wrong on that – oh, and most babies infected are preemies.
  • I was tested for this with DD and tested negative, but had I tested positive, my doctor said I did not have to have IV antibiotics if I didn’t want it, since it was not proven to prevent infection. He was very relaxed about it, and here they don’t even test for it.

    Of course there are ‘risk factors’ also, such as ROM for anything over 24 hours etc. if you have any risk factors, you can then decide what to do, or like mamakat said, assume you are positive.

    I’ve also heard numerous midwives say when their clients take echinacea and vit C for about a week before the test, they VERY rarely test positive. So if someone’s insisted on a test that may be a route to take.

    Hope this helps! Wish I could dig up all my old research for you!

  • Just want to let you know that where I live in Australia I have never been tested – with any of my 3 pregnancies, for GBS. It is simply not considered a big deal.
  • My midwife said when I tested positive in my first pregnancy that they would do IV antibiotics after 18 hours ROM. I had B about 30-45min post ROM. I was not tested w/ the other 2 and assumed that I was positive. M was born 1 1/2 hours post SROM and J born 4 hours post SROM. The last 2 were UC, but if I was going to have a midwife again I would insist on none to few cervical checks after ROM as the bacteria gets pushed into the Uterus by invading fingers. Do not let them strip or rupture membranes if you are worried about this issue. If you do go with the antibiotics beware of Thrush. The midwife archives were a great help.
  • I did it with M, and I’ll never ever do it again. Well, I won’t be having an assisted birth, so it won’t be an issue. But my midwives REALLY pushed testing, and then REALLY, REALLY pushed IV antibiotics – even stooping to scare tactics. Which then led to me having IV antibiotics which I believe made them feel more comfortable doing AROM, and treating me like a patient, and not a person.
  • I tested + in first pregnancy and I did the IV antibiotics, mostly because I had a really hard time finding accurate information on the risks and benefits. Also, my water broke before labor started and I think it may have had something to do with the GBS.

With K, I didn’t test and we watched for warning signs in me and/or K. I also took acidophilus throughout the pregnancy and took zinc the last few months. The zinc is great, it strengthens the membranes and helps prevent vaginal infections. I would HIGHLY recommend it to anyone who has had PROM in the past. My water broke at the very end of labor and we had no problems.

Categories: Pregnancy