By: Dr. Ramsey

Did you know that it is International Group B Strep (GBS) Awareness Month? GBS is a common bacteria infection that can be found in about 25% to 40% of all healthy adult women. You might have GBS in your flora even now, but it’s only something you need to be aware of if you are pregnant. GBS is not harmful to a pregnant woman, but it can be harmful to the baby.

If you are expecting, your Women’s Health Specialists provider will test you for GBS at some point between 35-37 weeks during your pregnancy. During a GBS test, your provider will take a swab of the bacteria in your vagina and rectum and send the samples to the lab for testing. Moms with GBS might experience a bladder infection, but most won’t experience any symptoms at all.

If you’re tested positive for GBS, the treatment process is very simple. Women’s Health Specialists will not treat it before labor, rather we will provide you with an IV treatment while you are in labor that will help remove the bacteria while giving birth, eliminating the possible infection in your baby.

If your baby does get GBS through the birthing process, there are some signs to be looking for such as poor feeding, a fever, sleeping more than usual, irritability, or skin color being off. If GBS is not treated in the baby, it can be serious and lead to pneumonia or meningitis.

Pregnancy can be a worrisome time, but GBS does not need to be one of those worries. Here at Women’s Health Specialists, we’re here to help you every step of the way.