Group B Streptococcus (Pregnancy)

One of my patients today presented concerned about potential problems with Group B Streptococcus.

What is Group B streptococcus (GBS)?

Between 20-30% of men and women in the UK have colonisation with Group B streptococcus (GBS) which  is a normal bacterium which colonises , usually without symptoms or side effects. GBS can, however, occasionally cause serious infections, usually in newborn babies.

GBS is not a sexually transmitted disease and treatment of a woman and of her partner carrying GBS does not prevent recurrence. Importantly, most women who have GBS do not pass it on to their babies. Most babies are born well, with no medical consequences. However, a few do go on to get the infection which can be serious.

Guidance from the Royal college of Obstetrics and Gynaecologists is that only mothers at high risk of having GBS should receive IV antibiotics prior to labour.

Please click on the images to go to the websites of the Royal College and the image below to the support group.

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