I understand that this thread in within 'home and natural birthing' and so had it not popped up and caught my eye on the main home page I would have never have even looked, nor commented...
However, as a mum who very almost lost my little boy to group b strep shortly after he was born 3 yrs ago I really felt that I ought to comment. (my apologies for the lack of detail by the way - i still find this very difficult to talk about even now).
I understand that all the research etc show the risks to be small and I can see how it may seem like it would never happen to you. However, please believe me when I say that if it did happen to you i'm sure that you would find it very difficult to forgive yourself for simply not having the IV in labour!
Although you may not get your ideal birth experience, it ultimately is a small sacrifice to make for the sake of your baby's health. When I had my little boy I had never even heard of group b strep. In this pregnancy I will be having a section so luckily I don't have to worry about the risk again this time around, but if I did there is absolutely no way I could put the baby at risk of having gbs - knowing what i know now!
I can see that home and natural birth is obviously a very important preferance for you ladies, but please don't put this choice above your babies well being. By being screened already and knowing that you are a carrier, you have a chance to save your baby from the potential of a very difficult start in life.
I don't wish to scare any of you but please don't be too quick to think that because the ratio is so low it will never happen to you - you can't say for certain that your baby won't be that 1 in 1000.
Hi daisyduck, thank you for sharing, I can not imagine what a traumatic time you went through with your son!
There have been a few threads going on lately discussing gbs that prompted peanutbean to start this one as the overarching one to offer support and advice in one central place. I guess you nay not have seen the others? I didn't want you to Think anyone is putting their baby at risk, I have needed to 'defend' my stance several tines now. Speaking personally, I previously had PROM where labour began 24 hrs later. I agreed to be transferred to hospital in case of infection. I began a temperature. They advised iv antibiotics. I accepted. They wanted to induce. I refused as labour was text book. They wanted to monitor baby's heart. I accepted. All normal. They wanted to screw a thermometer to babies head. I refused. All decisions based on baby's well being, evidence and instinct. A careful weighing up of my needs and baby's safety.
I think most women who have strong birth preferences would agree that baby comes first. I feel hospitals go over the top with intervention when it comes to Gbs and whilst in some cases it is essential, in most cases it is not, as a lot of research shows. There is also a great variation in how gbs status is dealt with across the uk and the world!
I've not got my appointment til next Tuesday then I need to arrange a home visit so might not really get to discuss it yet. I am assuming it is a done deal. They're going to have to have some pretty strong reasons to say no! If they do, I'm switching hospitals. I'm already considering it and only didn't as I am determined not to set foot in one.
Maybe I should update on ME while it's bumped! I've been told it's highly unlikely that I will get antibiotics at home. Oral might be offered but we can all see that they are pointless anyway. Will chase this with the consultant MW otherwise I'm just going to say no then in favour of monitoring and play it by ear. Assuming of course I have a positive test at 35 weeks AND my waters are gone for over 18 hours with no sign of delivery yet.
Daisyduck - While I'm sorry you had to go through that awful experience I just wanted to comment that my reluctance to support mass usage of GBS prophylaxis in labour is not at all based on my desire to have a natural home birth (as mentioned prior, that is not an issue for myself as in my area IV antibiotics can be administered at home) but my reluctance stems primarily from concerns for the long term health my children as well as for the future health of our society as a whole.
Apparently while the antibiotics has been shown to decrease the risk of GBS infections it has had no impact on mortality rates or long term morbidities. When the potential risks of wide spread utilization of GBS prophylaxis is considered the end conclusion is that giving IV antibiotics to all colonized women in labour is not supported by conclusive evidence.
Thanks Kandy. I had seen in my travels that the antiBs don't help reduce the risk of mortality. As far as I could tell this seems to be pretty much totally linked to prematurity. I will read your links with interest and if they show that the evidence does not entirely support antiBs then all the better for me as I'm now not likely to be able to get them!
I didn't think you could have home births with strep b? X
Hannah my love read the thread! lol The things I've been hearing, like you have to have a section and allsorts, absolute bollocks! There's loads here if you want to find out more. Were you a GBS carrier?
Kandy - I just had a squiz through the Cochrane review. I CANNOT believe all these guidelines are on the basis of 3 ancient studies involving 500 women that hardly showed much significance and did not follow the gold standard double-blind clinical trial. Blimey! And there was I thinking that generally these days we were more careful about this sort of thing in medicine. Of course it doesn't mean that IV ABs don't do anything, just that there is no evidence they do. That really helps with my decision. Thank you. I'm going to put that link in the first post as it's a really significant one. Hope you don't mind me pasting your comments in.
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