How should we manage infants at risk for group B streptococcal disease?
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Asymptomatic term infants whose mothers received adequate intrapartum antibiotic prophylaxis (defined as intravenous penicillin or ampicillin at least 4 hours before delivery) for group B streptococcal disease do not need work-up or treatment (strength of recommendation [SOR]: B, based on retrospective, population-based study). These infants should be observed for 48 hours, but may be discharged after 24 hours in circumstances where close follow-up is available (SOR: D, based on expert opinion). Symptomatic infants, premature infants (gestational age <35 weeks) of mothers who did not receive prophylaxis, and infants whose mothers had chorioamnionitis should receive a full evaluation (complete blood count, blood culture, and chest x-ray with or without a lumbar puncture) and an initial empiric antibiotic treatment with ampicillin or penicillin and gentamycin. If a term infant is not symptomatic and maternal antibiotic prophylaxis was not adequate, opinions differ as to whether to perform limited evaluation with empiric treatment or close observation (SOR: D, based on expert opinion).
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