Anyone else doing a GBS elimination regimen? - Mothering Forums
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#1 of 31 Old 03-10-2011, 07:46 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I'm gearing up to start my GBS elimination regimen on Saturday (32 weeks), and was wondering if anyone else is doing or planning on doing the same?  

 

Here's what I've got lined up: 

 

Supplements - 

Vit. C with bioflavonoids - 500mg 2x/day

Cranberry extract pills

Garlic pills - 1000mg 2x/day

Acidophilus - 4 billion cells 2x/day

Vitamin D - 2000 IU daily (have been doing this since start of 2nd tri)

Echinacea - won't start this until 1-2 weeks before test, so 34-35 weeks

 

Other stuff - 

Colloidal Silver - hold 3 tsp. in mouth for a few minutes before swallowing, 1x/day

Tea tree oil tampons - 4 hours/day for the week leading up to the test

 

I'm also researching grapefruit seed extract - wondering if the capsules are as effective as the tincture.  

 

If anyone else is doing this, what are you doing?  

 


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#2 of 31 Old 03-11-2011, 04:41 AM
 
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Wow, that is hard core!! I could never remember to take that much stuff  - I am a terrible supplement-taker!  If I remember to take a vitamin on a given day, I've done well *blush*

 

I am going to try to remember to take a probiotic every day starting anytime now (should have been doing it all along) and I will do Vitamin D, too, I hadn't thought of that.  For the week before the swab I will be using acidophilus and garlic suppositories.  I was positive with DS1 (did nothing to prep) and negative with DS2 (did the probiotics and suppositories) so I have no proof whether this particular regimen is super effective, but I figure it can't hurt to do it again.

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#3 of 31 Old 03-11-2011, 06:29 AM
 
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I doing garlic in the vagina once a night a week before the test and a probiotic everyday..can't really handle much else!


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#4 of 31 Old 03-11-2011, 07:00 AM
 
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What exactly does the regiment do?  Is it supposed to repress GBS?  Get rid of it completely?  Prevent the spread of GBS to the baby?  I haven't heard of this before, so I'd love some info!  :)


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#5 of 31 Old 03-11-2011, 07:48 AM
 
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I was positive with my last pregnancy but had numerous yeast infections during pregnancy and was on abx at least once.  I debated whether to do a lot of garlic and other stuff to get a negative swab reading.  In the end, I am going to continue with my current supplement regimen and jsut see what happens.  I know the odds are low but if I was "really" positive and sort of short term tricked a negative I would just be worried that the baby could contract something.  The hospital does require IV abx 4 hrs prior to delivery.  In my case my longest labor was 4.5 hrs so unlikely I would even get the abx, in which case they do a blood culture on baby and just watch.  My relevant supplements that I've been taking are probiotics, D3, and a great supplement called Yeast Defense.  It contains Pau D'arco, garlic, caprylic acid, GSE and maybe something else.  It really keeps the bad yeast at bay so... we'll see come my 36 ish week appt.

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#6 of 31 Old 03-11-2011, 08:05 AM
 
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DDCC because this subject has been on my mind a LOT recently!  (Also, I'm due June 1st and my ob has been pushing early induction for weeks irked.gif ... we'll see, but I might be a May mama yet.)  Anyway ...

 

I was negative with dd#1.  With dd#2, I wasn't really concerned about it, until they actually DID the swab!  My eyebrows climbed to my hairline when they swabbed both my vaginal area AND anus.  When I asked my mw what the HELL she was doing, 'cause I was pretty sure the baby wasn't coming out of THERE, she informed me that protocol was to swab both areas.  Now, IMHO, there's not a whole lot of ways to NOT be GBS+ in that situation, no matter what regimen I follow.  But I'm biased. redface.gif  And I did indeed come back positive.  Didn't really matter, since her birth was wicked-short, at home/unassisted, and I had no risk factors for developing an infection.

 

So ...

#1:  Did I have a crazy mw with dd#2, or is that normal practice?  (They only did a vaginal swab with dd#1, but it was a different mw/different city.)

#2:  Do y'all think that a regimen like this would work for being swabbed in both areas?  'Cause I do NOT want abx unless absolutely, positively necessary; I HATE iv's, and I HATE taking abx.

 

Thanks!


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#7 of 31 Old 03-11-2011, 08:17 AM
 
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@kamalynsky - I think the garlic is a mild astringent/antiseptic when used vaginally, and taken orally it helps clean out your digestive tract.  As for the probiotics, the theory is that if you build up the population of good bacteria, they will outcompete the bad ones (i.e. GBS).  My midwife likened it to a garden or a yard - a nice lush, dense grass cover will naturally help repel dandelions.  As for some of the other stuff - Vitamin C and D boost immune response (as does echinacea?) and the grapefruit seed extract is, like garlic, kind of a natural anti-microbial (and anti-fungal, too - commonly used for thrush as well).  I don't know what studies have been done to prove any of it actually works, but the theory is they are unlikely to hurt.

 

@heathenmom...the exact same thing happened to me between baby #1 and #2.  At some point the standard seems to have shifted from just vaginal swab to vaginal and anal.  GBS can be present in both places, and given that the birth process tends to mix things up lots, I guess they are trying to make sure they cover the potential transmission from one spot to another.  Also, bacteria present in one place makes it higher likelihood for it to colonize the other...they also test urine at start of pregnancy for GBS and a finding of colonization of the urinary tract supposedly represents a high degree of colonization and therefore higher risk of transmission to baby.

 

I am doing the swab but still thinking about whether a positive will mean automatically treating with antibiotics from start of labour, or whether we will base it on risk factors.  I am leaning toward basing it on risk factors - I tested negative with DS2, but all the same my water broke about 3 hours before he was born, and it was a constant flush away from baby over that 3 hours.  Even if I had been GBS positive, I probably would have been comfortable not doing antibiotics.

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#8 of 31 Old 03-11-2011, 08:34 AM
 
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I was going to just do hibiclens before my test and up to the birth.


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#9 of 31 Old 03-11-2011, 08:40 AM
 
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just to be clear, abx during labor aren't "required", but it will be done automatically unless you decline because it's what's recommended.  I'm declining them whether I'm positive or not, and my midwife supports that.  I'm trying to get a negative so that they won't give me crap about leaving the hospital a few hours after birth.  It's really not so I can stay negative (although that would be ideal!), because you can flip flop right up til delivery.


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#10 of 31 Old 03-11-2011, 11:44 AM
 
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I just did Hibiclens last time before the test and again once while in labor.  And yes, it is common protocol to swab both vagina and anus due to the close proximity. 

 


Mum to DS1 7/09 and DS2 5/11

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#11 of 31 Old 03-11-2011, 11:49 AM - Thread Starter
 
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I've been GBS+ with my previous two pregnancies, and I HATED having that damn IV.  So if I can avoid it this time I'm going to!  Both of their labors started with my water breaking and nothing much happening for quite a while, which is one of the main risk factors for GBS infection in the baby, so even if I could refuse abx I wouldn't if I tested positive. 

 

I tried a less-strict regimen with DS2 and still tested positive, which is why I'm doing so much this time around.  Even if I do test negative, I'll probably still stay on some of the supplements (acidophilus, cranberry, Vit. C, garlic capsules) to hopefully stay negative until the birth.  I already take a bunch of pills every day, what's a few more!  lol.gif


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#12 of 31 Old 03-11-2011, 12:48 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lovebeingamomma View Post

just to be clear, abx during labor aren't "required", but it will be done automatically unless you decline because it's what's recommended.  I'm declining them whether I'm positive or not, and my midwife supports that.  I'm trying to get a negative so that they won't give me crap about leaving the hospital a few hours after birth.  It's really not so I can stay negative (although that would be ideal!), because you can flip flop right up til delivery.


I was GBS NEGATIVE with dd#1.  The hospital insisted that I was positive and didn't know what I was talking about.  (I got my records later and they CLEARLY state that I was GBS-).  I declined and declined and declined abx that I didn't need or want and STILL ended up with an IV, being pumped full of abx that I'm convinced caused a good bit of damage to dd#1's gut. irked.gif  Just because you decline doesn't mean they won't force it on you.
 

 


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#13 of 31 Old 03-11-2011, 01:06 PM
 
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I have been thinking about doing something but I am not sure..

I was + with 2 out of 4 pregnancies but with the last one they tested at 35w so I am not sure how accurate that was.

 

I am planning a homebirth at this point though and am thinking about declining testing all together.


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#14 of 31 Old 03-11-2011, 01:39 PM
 
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I'm sorry that happened to you.  No one can force anything on you unless you've already consented to it.  If you had signed a form declining abx what they did was illegal.
 

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I was GBS NEGATIVE with dd#1.  The hospital insisted that I was positive and didn't know what I was talking about.  (I got my records later and they CLEARLY state that I was GBS-).  I declined and declined and declined abx that I didn't need or want and STILL ended up with an IV, being pumped full of abx that I'm convinced caused a good bit of damage to dd#1's gut. irked.gif  Just because you decline doesn't mean they won't force it on you.
 

 



 


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#15 of 31 Old 03-11-2011, 05:14 PM
 
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I just did Hibiclens last time before the test and again once while in labor.  And yes, it is common protocol to swab both vagina and anus due to the close proximity. 

 



I can't get Hibiclens in Canada, but my MIL is picking up an 8oz bottle for me while she's down in the US this weekend.  My plan is to keep diluted HIbiclens in a peri-bottle and rinse with it after using the bathroom starting next week.  Then in the days/week leading up to the GBS swab I'll do a gentle internal rinse as well.  I believe at my midwives office I do the swab myself - in which case I can choose how/where exactly to swab.... If I don't have the option of swabbing myself (which would surprise me) I'll make sure to rinse with the Hibiclens at the midwives office when I arrive and pee before going in for my appointment.  Sure, it might be 'tricking' the test, but since I don't believe in the accuracy of the test anyway, the possibility of 'tricking' the test doesn't bother me at all.

 

I am planning a homebirth, and if hospital transfer wasn't always a possibility, I would simply decline the test altogether since I don't believe its accurate enough to depend on, then take abx only if risk factors were present (preterm baby, prolonged ROM, unexplained fever...).  However, if I get transferred to the hospital and do not have a negative test to show them, then my baby would be kept in the nursery for 3 days, possibly subjected to numerous tests, and typically given abx, even against my express wishes. So - Hibiclens seems like a good option to me.

 

For those of you who have used Hibiclens in the past, do you think a single 8oz bottle will last me through the next 8-10 weeks, or should I ask them to bring me two (since I can't exactly go get more myself!)

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never heard of this. I don't even remember being tested for GBS last pregnancy, when do they do that? Also, they just put you on antibiotics during labor if you have it right? Is there supposed to be some harm to the baby with ABX?


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#17 of 31 Old 03-11-2011, 09:25 PM
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never heard of this. I don't even remember being tested for GBS last pregnancy, when do they do that? Also, they just put you on antibiotics during labor if you have it right? Is there supposed to be some harm to the baby with ABX?

 

well, there is harm to the baby if it gets GBS, since it can kill the baby.
 

 

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#18 of 31 Old 03-11-2011, 09:36 PM - Thread Starter
 
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For me, I want to avoid abx during labor because I don't want thrush again with a teeny baby, I don't want his gut flora to get screwed up, I don't want to have to go to the hospital any earlier than necessary in order to get the abx, and I don't want an IV if I can help it.  I don't even want a heplock/saline lock, for that matter - they hurt and annoy the crap out of me!


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never heard of this. I don't even remember being tested for GBS last pregnancy, when do they do that? Also, they just put you on antibiotics during labor if you have it right? Is there supposed to be some harm to the baby with ABX?



They dont test for this at all here in Finland.  They will consider the antibiotics only if you have risk factors.


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#20 of 31 Old 03-12-2011, 02:22 PM
 
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I haven't looked up this figure, but my baby's ped told me that only 4% of babies who contract GBS during delivery have any symptoms.  I know it can be serious is rare cases, but getting it doesn't automatically mean harm to the baby.
 

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well, there is harm to the baby if it gets GBS, since it can kill the baby.
 

 



 


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#21 of 31 Old 03-12-2011, 03:16 PM
 
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Originally Posted by LacieD View Post

I'm gearing up to start my GBS elimination regimen on Saturday (32 weeks), and was wondering if anyone else is doing or planning on doing the same?  

 

Here's what I've got lined up: 

 

Supplements - 

Vit. C with bioflavonoids - 500mg 2x/day

Cranberry extract pills

Garlic pills - 1000mg 2x/day

Acidophilus - 4 billion cells 2x/day

Vitamin D - 2000 IU daily (have been doing this since start of 2nd tri)

Echinacea - won't start this until 1-2 weeks before test, so 34-35 weeks

 

Other stuff - 

Colloidal Silver - hold 3 tsp. in mouth for a few minutes before swallowing, 1x/day

Tea tree oil tampons - 4 hours/day for the week leading up to the test

 

I'm also researching grapefruit seed extract - wondering if the capsules are as effective as the tincture.  

 

If anyone else is doing this, what are you doing?  

 


The bolded is what my MW had me take for the 2 weeks prior to having the testing done...I only did this with my 3rd pregnancy, but have never tested positive for GBS.  I will probably do the same regimen again this time.  I am all ready taking Vit D, 10,000-15,000 IU's daily and Vitamin C, 4,000-5,000mg daily plus a bunch of other supplements that have been helpful for different things.

 


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Quote:
Originally Posted by lovebeingamomma View Post

but getting it doesn't automatically mean harm to the baby.
 

It's the number one cause of life-threatening infections in newborns, and kills 2000 babies per year.

 

It is possible that mother can be GBP+ and not pass it on to her baby.  But if she does, the results are really bad.

 

http://www.childbirth.org/articles/GBS.html
 

 

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#24 of 31 Old 03-13-2011, 04:32 AM
 
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you can believe what you want everyone has to do their own research.  see I can quote websites in my favor too: http://www.lifes-little-blessings.com/group_b_strep_and_screening.htm.  So how do people come to a good decision when there are different numbers posted everywhere?  A lot more research then just looking on one website.   
 

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It's the number one cause of life-threatening infections in newborns, and kills 2000 babies per year.

 

It is possible that mother can be GBP+ and not pass it on to her baby.  But if she does, the results are really bad.

 

http://www.childbirth.org/articles/GBS.html
 

 



 


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you can believe what you want everyone has to do their own research.  see I can quote websites in my favor too: http://www.lifes-little-blessings.com/group_b_strep_and_screening.htm.  So how do people come to a good decision when there are different numbers posted everywhere?  A lot more research then just looking on one website.   

You have to look critically, and realize that not all webpages are legit sources.  The one you posted is someone's personal blog, and what she posted are opinions and not facts.  

 

If you want to risk having a GBP baby, that's your right, but I really think you need to go into it knowing the actual facts, and no, garlic won't help.

 

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#26 of 31 Old 03-13-2011, 03:08 PM
 
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I would encourage everyone to take a deep breath and respond respectfully to each other.  I believe the OP was asking *if* anyone else was doing a regimen, and if so, what exactly they are doing, not necessarily debating the merits of each facet of her regimen.  Thank you!  thumb.gif


 

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#27 of 31 Old 03-13-2011, 03:28 PM
 
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Originally Posted by MsFortune View Post

 

You have to look critically, and realize that not all webpages are legit sources.  The one you posted is someone's personal blog, and what she posted are opinions and not facts.  

 

If you want to risk having a GBP baby, that's your right, but I really think you need to go into it knowing the actual facts, and no, garlic won't help.

 

Given that the screening isn't perfect - i.e. you can screen negative on the day of the swab, but since GBS can start to thrive at any point after that (or babies can pick it up from a source other than mom), one could argue that everyone should have antibiotics in labour.  That is not how it's approached, though, because you have to balance risks and benefits, at the population level (if you're a health care provider) or individually (when making decisions for yourself).

 

I always refer to the CDC site on this issue, because although it is written kind of alarmingly, you can't argue with numbers.  And they do say right on there (http://www.cdc.gov/groupbstrep/about/newborns-pregnant.html) that "only 4-6% of babies with group B strep infections die."  That doesn't mean we shouldn't worry about it, and it also doesn't include babies who have long-term health issues as a result of infection, or the stress on babies and parents even when baby makes it through without residual issues.  But the number the PP cited wasn't wrong.

 

Also from the CDC site "A pregnant woman who tests positive for group B strep and gets antibiotics during labor has only a 1 in 4,000 chance of delivering a baby with group B strep disease, compared to a 1 in 200 chance if she does not get antibiotics during labor."  Many will focus on the reduction in risk by using antibiotics; others will see that the risk of infection is still pretty low (0.5%) even in GBS positive mothers.  To each their own, IMHO.  Everyone makes their decisions and lives with risks...and not just on this issue, there are lots of things other pregnant moms decide that I might not be comfortable with personally, and vice versa. 

 

Edited to add:  The number cited in that childbirth.org site about 2000 deaths per year would correspond to a total of over 33,000 cases per year (assuming 6% mortality).  The Centre for Disease control says the average number of newborn (under 1 week) infections per year is 1200, which would correspond with an estimated 72 deaths per year (http://www.cdc.gov/groupbstrep/about/newborns-pregnant.html).  I'm not sure what numbers that other site is quoting, perhaps all infections over the first year of life (or all infections recorded in the general population)?  It's not really accurate to lump them all together, because antibiotics received in labour are not going to prevent a GBS infection in a baby a week or 3 months or a year after the birth.  They don't provide a reference so it's hard to fact check their numbers.

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#28 of 31 Old 03-13-2011, 05:22 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Yes, please don't start a flame war in here - I'm already in the middle of one on a mainstream board because I'm daring to ingest metal and shove antiseptics up my tootie, which cannot possibly be safe, despite my research to the contrary.  

 

I started all the supplements last night, or at least tried to - note to self, when taking 4 large pills, leave the expensive probiotic for last in case of puking.  

 


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#29 of 31 Old 03-13-2011, 07:36 PM
 
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Originally Posted by LacieD View Post

Yes, please don't start a flame war in here -

 

My thoughts exactly!   In the end, every woman has to make the decisions that are right for *her* and for *her family*.  I encourage people to seek out high-quality factual information, and make the best choice they can based on both the available information AND their own feelings/intuition.  Don't just look at the statistics, but dig deeper to find out what those numbers 'mean' in terms of relative risk. Explore your personal risk factors, history, and comfort levels. Take a look at the mainstream sources like the CDC, SOGC, ACOG  Take a look at broader sources like the WHO; the works of respected authors like Sarah Buckley & Henci Goer; the Cochrane Collaboration; Midwifery Today Summer 2010 issue.  Make the best choice you can, for the circumstances you're in, and accept that each choice comes with its own potential outcomes (both good & bad).
 

 

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#30 of 31 Old 03-20-2011, 02:32 PM
 
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Originally Posted by Fluga View Post

They dont test for this at all here in Finland.  They will consider the antibiotics only if you have risk factors.


And what are the risk factors?  I've never tested positive for this before, but had a up/uc my last two births so had no tests at all then.  I'm feeling a little more paranoid this time around for some reason and would love more info, thanks!
 

 

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