Streptococcal Infections (Group B)
Group B Streptococcus (GBS) commonly live in people’s gastrointestinal and genital tracts. Most of the time the bacteria are not harmful and do not make people feel sick or have any symptoms. Sometimes the bacteria invade the body and cause certain infections, which are known as GBS disease. GBS causes illness in newborn babies, pregnant women, elderly and adults with other illnesses, such as diabetes or liver disease. GBS is the most common cause of life-threatening infections in newborns. Pregnant women should be tested for GBS late in pregnancy (36-37 weeks) as they can carry GBS and have no symptoms. Symptoms depend on the part of the body that is infected. Infection may cause bloodstream infections, lung infections, skin and soft-tissue infections or bone and joint infections.