Natural Birth

Did being Group B Strep + cause a problem for anyone's natural birth plans?

Today I was asking my doctor about her policies and making sure she knew I plan for a natural Bradley birth (she was totally on board with it, btw), but she mentioned that I am Group B Strep positive and will have to have an IV for antibiotics for that. She said though that the IV won't stop me from moving around as needed and shouldn't cause any complications for me otherwise.

Re: Did being Group B Strep + cause a problem for anyone's natural birth plans?

  • The only issue I had was that my water broke & it put me on a serious time limit, which made me transfer from the birth center to the hospital. Otherwise, no problems.

     

    (I'm not sure the time would have mattered anyway because DD ended up being transverse so I ended up with a c/s.)

  • image MissyOlivePants:

    The only issue I had was that my water broke & it put me on a serious time limit, which made me transfer from the birth center to the hospital. Otherwise, no problems.

     

    (I'm not sure the time would have mattered anyway because DD ended up being transverse so I ended up with a c/s.)

    Yes, I heard that I will need two bags of antibiotics and it takes three hours. I was hoping to labor at home for as long as possible, but now I guess that might be out the window.

  • I found the IV abx pain in my arm to be worse than my contractions.  But this time my midwife said they could dilute the concentration more... i'd ask about that.   If they let you move thats great... they didnt let me, so i was in bed the whole time.  I ended up with an epidural.... hoping to skip that this time!  I switched hospitals and midwives, and they seem much more natural-friendly, so im optimistic!  not happy to be GBS+ again, but such is life!  just hope i have time to get both doses so LO isnt required to stay 48hrs... last time labor was 6.5 hrs from first contraction, and nobody told me what to expect so i didnt have time for 2 doses after getting to the hospital.  Now i know to go in ASAP after i know its the real thing!
  • The protocol is 1 bag every 4 hours - once your water has broken (unless you're going to be in a hospital, they'll probably start it right away).

    If I were planning a hospital birth, I would still plan to labor at home as long as possible.  If my water were to break again before getting to the hospital, I think I might be more torn this time around as to what to do....

  • I'm still waiting on my test results (the lab screwed up my first swab), but if I'm GBS +'ve, it will mean that I go to the hospital a bit sooner than I would otherwise. I do want to make sure to get the antibiotics if I'm positive.

    The upside is that they can lock the IV after you get your bag of antibiotics and cut you loose for the remainder of the 4 hours.

  • Nope.   For two of my births, I was Group  B strep+.   It had absolutely no influence on my ability to birth pain-med free.
  • I was positive this time around and got in one bag of abx before I gave birth - I was only at the birth center for an hour before DD was born.  It didn't hinder me in the least although I did find the IV in my hand annoying when I was in transition. 
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  • This is my first pregnancy and I'm GBS+. If my water breaks before labor starts it sounds to me like a natural birth may be more difficult because they want me to come to the hospital right away and unless I've started having contractions they'll also start pitocin. The midwife told me that if it was my second child and they thought labor would be quick, they'd probably wait a bit to see if they started on their own. 

    I'm really hoping my labor doesn't start with my water breaking. If I just start having contractions, then I can still stay at home as long as possible, just leaving a bit earlier to make sure I get the antibiotics. 

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  • I had to go to the birthing center as soon as my water broke to get antibiotics (but my labor was pretty quick anyway). They did not put in an IV. They opened a line, pushed in the dose, then took the line out so that I would not be bothered with it. I did not need a second dose b/c I was done before the next dose was needed.

    See if you can get a hep-lock instead of a full IV. Then they have a line open to put the medicine in, but you don't have to drag around an IV pole everywhere.

    I did not labor with an IV, but I have been to the hospital with an IV before, and trust me, even something as simple as going to the bathroom gets complicated and annoying with an IV pole in-tow.

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  • Not really. I wanted to stay home & labor as long as possible & I did, so by the time we got to the birthing center there was a little rush to get the IV in & start the antibiotics. When I arrived they did pretty much everything all at once- quick internal (I was already 8cm), asking questions, putting in the IV & starting the bag of antibiotics, and monitoring LO. It was a little challenging lying still for all of that since my contractions were pretty intense at that point, plus it took her a few tries to get the IV in. By the time they were done with the questions & monitoring I'd finished almost the whole dose, so it really didn't make a difference or tie me to the bed longer than I needed to. Once the bag was empty they unhooked me & I was able to walk around like normal.

    The downside was that it made it way too easy for them to do things against my wishes after LO was born. I was given a routine pitocin shot 'to speed things up' that I refused; if I didn't have that IV it would've been an easier fight. 

    ETA: If my water had broken at home I probably would've gone sooner. I started laboring around 3pm, went to the hospital at 10pm & finished the antibiotics by 11pm, my MW broke my water at 11.30pm & LO was born at 12.30am. It was nice & quick so I only had to get one dose.

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  • Nope - I was both times.  This time I was actually getting my second dose just as I was about ready to push.  To be honest, I hardly remember them hooking me back up.  I was actually in the tub at the time so it didn't affect my ability to choose my labor position.  I was cautious about getting there sooner than I might have otherwise because we thought I'd go pretty fast and I wanted to get both doses.

    We did have to transfer to the hospital after birth from the birth center as kiddo was having breathing issues (due to retained fluid in her lungs).  In part because I was group B+ they did 48 hours of antibiotics for her - although honestly my guess is they would have done that regardless as their standard precaution against lung infection when babies have TTN.  Not my ideal situation but...

  • I was GBS+ and did a Bradley Method birth in a hospital. I got a hep-lock, so I had one bag every 4 hours. Definitely have them dilute it if it starts to hurt your arm. I went natural and the hep-lock wasn't a problem at all! (Except that since I fainted after I delivered the placenta they wouldn't take it out until the next day "when they were sure I wouldn't need it anymore.")
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  • I think the only things it really changes are having to go in right away if your water breaks and having to get an IV.  I worried about my water breaking but fortunately it didn't and I was able to labor at home.  My problem was that my labor went really fast and DS came an hour after arriving at the hospital.  I hadn't even finished the antibiotics when he was born.  They monitored him a little more closely to make sure he didn't develop an infection but he was fine.  For me, the IV with antibiotics was painful but I didn't notice it much until after he was out.  Then, I couldn't get that hep lock out fast enough.
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  • I was induced so I was always hooked up to something. But, my Dr said if I had went on my own I would have to be hooked up for each round of medicine and then would be free to move around as I wished. The one thing they didn't tell me though was that being GBS+ was a 2 night stay at my hospital. I wanted to go home ASAP and was not happy about that.
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  • You'll be tethered by the IV, but hopefully they can unhook you after it is finished infusing.
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  • I still moved around, I just drug along the IV pole.  I was concerned because I wanted to labor at home and my OB told me I had to come in once my water broke.  But, my water didn't break until right before I started pushing, so it was not an issue.
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  • My only issue was that I labored too quickly and didn't get a full dose of antibiotics, so we had to stay longer than intended at the hospital (which was honestly AWFUL for me - I wanted to be home soo badly)

    My water didn't break until I was pushing, though, so the risk was sooo low that baby was exposed, but the pedi on staff was pretty adamant. 

  • No. I had a homebirth and was GBS+. I didn't have antibiotics either (per my choice). My midwife only insists on the antibiotics if you have prolonged rupture of membranes or a fever or there may have been one other reason that I can't remember now.

    My water didn't break until late in labor (while pushing), and I never had a fever. So no antibiotics for me. (Again, DH and I were totally okay with that. In our opinion, it's crazy to treat all GBS+ women in labor with antibiotics when it only causes issues for a small fraction of them. Once again, that is our opinion. We did our research and that was our decision. We were 100% okay with my midwive's protocol.)

    So no, being GBs+ shouldn't mean you can't have a med-free birth.
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  • I had to be hooked up to the IV long enough to get the antibiotics. I could have gotten up and walked as long as I took the IV stand with me but I didn't feel like dealing with it so I just laid in bed for that half hour.
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