Group B Streptococcus Infection During Pregnancy
Did Your Baby Suffer from Undiagnosed or Untreated Group B Strep? Call (215) 866-2424!
It is crucial for pregnant women to receive quality prenatal care in order to prevent some common complications during labor and delivery. One of those possible complications is infection from Group B streptococcus. Failure to diagnose or treat Group B strep before labor can result in very harmful consequences to your newborn, including death.
Unfortunately, doctor negligence, even with something as important as childbirth, is all too common. If your baby suffered complications during labor or delivery and you believe that medical malpractice may be to blame, contact a skilled legal advocate from The Beasley Firm. Our firm is highly rated on Best Law Firms® and Super Lawyers®, and has recovered multi-million-dollar settlements & verdicts for birth injuries in Pennsylvania.
Call (215) 866-2424 today to discuss your case during a free, confidential consultation.
What is Group B Streptococcus?
Group B strep (GBS) is a harmless bacterium that is often found in the vagina and rectum of healthy women. It is not a sexually transmitted disease. In the United States, approximately 25% of women are carriers of GBS and have no symptoms at all.
However, if this harmless bacterium is passed from mother to baby during labor and delivery, it can cause serious catastrophic illnesses or brain damage in the newborn. The GBS infection is known to cause meningitis, pneumonia, sepsis, and even death in a newborn.
Were You Tested or Treated for GBS?
Group B strep infections in a newborn are entirely preventable or treatable.
Every pregnant woman needs to be tested to see if they are a carrier of the Group B strep bacterium even if they did not test positive with prior pregnancies. Testing is usually performed between 35 - 37 weeks gestation or in the 9th month of the pregnancy.
If you test positive for GBS you will need to talk to your doctor or midwife about how to address the infection during labor and delivery. Many times, an antibiotic will be administered at the onset of labor. If you have not had a GBS test when labor begins, remind the doctor or delivery room staff that you do not know your GBS status.
What are the Signs & Symptoms of Group B Strep?
It is estimated that approximately 1 in every 200 babies born whose mothers were not treated with antibiotics for GBS, go on to develop signs and symptoms of the Group B strep disease.
Newborns that are infected with GBS may show one or more of the following signs and symptoms:
- Stressed or jittery
- Grunting with breathing
- Flaring of the nostrils
- Apnea or periods without breathing
- Rapid and shallow breathing
- Very fast or very slow heart rate
- Cyanosis, a bluish discoloration of the skin or fingernails
- Limp or lethargic
- Poor feeding
- Difficulty maintaining a normal body temperature
If the Group B strep infection in a newborn is not promptly diagnosed and treated, it could lead to meningitis, pneumonia, respiratory failure, hypoglycemia or low blood sugar or disseminated intravascular coagulation (DIC) which is a condition that causes abnormal blood clotting, seizures, liver failure, kidney failure, blindness, deafness, cerebral palsy, and many other complications including death.
Contact The Beasley Firm to Get Justice for Your Baby
When you are pregnant, it is essential that you know your GBS status. It is just as equally important to discuss your options with your physician prior to labor and delivery. If you are GBS positive and do not receive antibiotics prior to a vaginal delivery or after your water breaks, it could lead to a serious Group B step infection in your newborn.
Our experienced legal team here at The Beasley Firm has seen the catastrophic birth injuries that untreated GBS can cause in a newborn.
If your baby was injured due to a Group B strep infection that was not properly treated, please feel free to call us at (215) 866-2424 for a risk-free consultation.
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