Group B Streptococci (GBS)

In 2002, CDC recommended universal prenatal screening for vaginal and rectal Group B Strep colonization of all pregnant women at 35-37 weeks’ gestation. Group B Streptococcus (group B strep) is a type of bacteria that causes illness in people of all ages. Also known as GBS, group B strep disease can be especially severe in newborns, most commonly causing sepsis (infection of the blood), pneumonia (infection in the lungs), and sometimes meningitis (infection of the fluid and lining around the brain and spinal cord). The most common problems caused by group B strep bacteria in adults are bloodstream infections, pneumonia, skin and soft-tissue infections, and bone and joint infections.

Group-B Streptococcus is the leading cause of neonatal infections, which can result in septicemia, pneumonia and meningitis. It is the most common cause of life-threatening infection in newborns. One out of every twenty babies with GBS dies from the infection. In pregnant women, GBS can cause bladder infections, womb infections, and stillbirths. Most adults are asymptomatic carriers of GBS in the bowel, vagina, bladder or throat. Diagnosis by traditional cultures may take several days to complete. Once diagnosed, GBS can be treated with antibiotics to prevent the spread from mother to baby. In this assay, DNA is extracted from the specimen and subjected to PCR amplification.

WCPL’s testing benefits:
Excellent sensitivity and specificity
Sensitivity – 94%
Specificity – 96%
Specimen stability in transport
Timely definitive results
Reports may be faxed directly to the hospital

Collection Protocol:

Group B Collection Protocol