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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi Everyone,


Has anyone experiencing secondary infertility also tested positive for Strep B?


I had a miscarriage three years ago - before the miscarriage I went to the doctor as I thought I had an infection - sore tummy, didn't feel right.  I then had a scan at 7 weeks that really hurt, came home and was in pain for the rest of the evening.  Two days later I miscarried, and then developed an infection that took 6 weeks of antibiotics to get rid of ( a swab was never done so I don't know what bacteria caused it).    About a year later I had an HSG and developed symptoms of another infection afterwards, again no swab was done but I was treated with antibiotics and was told I was probably just more sensitive to procedures than some.  I am now down-regging on an IVF cycle and very recently I had a hysteroscopy.  Although I had absolutely no pain for 24 hours the familiar lower abdominal soreness, bloated feeling, cramps and feeling generally unwell came back again - keeping me up in the night.  I went to the clinic the next day, was prescribed antibiotics, had a swab done, and within 24 hours the symptoms were gone.  Three days after finishing the antibiotics the symptoms have come back and it turns out the only thing the swab showed was Strep B.  I have been told that this shouldn't cause me to have symptoms (and is only a concern during labour as it is dangerous for the baby) and is also particularly difficult to get rid of, but I've been doing some research on the internet and have found some mention of certain women being more sensitive to strep B than others, and a few studies that have found that giving women with Strep B and their partners antibiotics before conception, then IV antibiotics afterwards, helped them to conceive and to carry to full term (there weren't many women involved in the study but they all had secondary infertility, had had miscarriages or failed IVF, and were strep B positive).   


Has anyone else heard of this?


One more thing to mention - I also had a uterine infection after the birth of my daughter 12 years ago - again no swab test but antibiotics got rid of it. 


Peonie x
 

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Hey  :)
I had strep B when i was preg with my DS 10 yrs ago im not sure i can help i just know how frustrated i was at the time as no one does this as a routine test. . . I believe they do un america!!
Not sure about anything else to do with secondary infertility but am intruigued to see other peoples views/experiences on this!!
Carley xXx
 

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Hi Peonie

Could you please post the links to the studies you mention?

I lost triplet boys last year at 21 weeks. I also became very ill and spent time in ICU.

I too had a feeling from 11 weeks that I had an infection. I complained of a lower abdominal ache and was tested for urinary infections at my GPs and hospital - nothing showed up and I was told it was normal stretching.

When I lost the babies the only thing I tested positive for was Group B infection. At the time doctors were not sure if I lost the babies because I had an infection or had an infection because I was losing the babies. Their best guess was that I had an incompetent cervix and I was treated for this. I too was told that Group B only causes problems if it has been left untreated when labour begins.

I am now fourteen and half weeks pregnant and I fear Step B had reared its ugly head again. The familiar ache is back. I had some spotting last week which alarmed me so I went to see a private consultant. When he was taking my history when I mentioned strep B he asked what antibiotics I was taking during this pregnancy and immediately sent off a swab for Group B. Since then I have been reading about Group B and miscarriage and there is evidence to suggest that Group B can cause late miscarriage. I’m horrified that my usual consultant even though he was my doctor through my last pregnancy did not consider advising me to take antibiotics. The private consultant and my GP have both said that I should have been monitored v closely to ensure that group B was not present. My GP prescribed antibiotics while awaiting the results.

Anyway I should be getting my results today so I’m praying that’s it not the ugly Group B but part of me already thinks it may be too late.

Sorry for such a long post – hope my story helps in some way
Hels


 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Hi Carley and Hels,

Thanks for your replies. Hels I am so very sorry to hear of your loss. I really hope that the ABs have worked their magic this time and that you are feeling better now. I sent you a PM the other day - I hope you got it ok. You were right to go to the GP for ABs and I agree with your new consultant that you need to be monitored and on ABs. I can't believe that the other one didn't think of this!

My recent IVF cycle unfortunately wasn't successful even though I had two great quality blastocysts put back. I had a faint positive pregnancy test on the morning of test day (I couldn't go in for a blood test as I was away) but by that evening it had turned to negative. My HCG the next day was 5, and the next 2. I'm waiting for my follow-up but I suspect that I had a very early miscarriage. One thing I noticed is that I didn't feel at all well after embryo transfer. I had had an infection during down-regging after the hysto (needed two weeks ABs in the end as it came back after the first course). During stimms I felt fine, but after ET I had a lot of cramping and discomfort. By the next day I actually felt slightly sick when I touched my lower abdomen. I also started to feel awful. I put this down to the meds, but a few days after stopping them I had another swab test and was +++ for Strep B again. This time I wasn't treated for it. The discomfort across my lower abdomen didn't go away after my AF arrived and finished; in fact it got worse. I also felt absolutely washed out and lifeless - again, I put this down to my hormones, but now I'm not so sure if that was all that was causing it.

At the end of last week, following a particularly bad day of discomfort and cramping, I phoned my IVF clinic to say I thought I had an infection - I never heard anything back. So instead I went to my GP and got ABs (Penicillin) for the Strep B in case that was causing my symptoms, and then, before I started taking them, went to a sexual health (GUM) clinic as I knew they would do a swab test that would go straight to the lab and therefore might be most accurate. The results haven't come back yet but they did a test there and then and found bacterial vaginosis (an overgrowth of anaerobic bacteria) and prescribed me Metronidazole for this. This wasn't found on the swab test I had the week before. I'm curious to see if it will show up in the culture test they did on the same day or if it's just that this type of bacteria doesn't culture well. Sorry if this is too much information, but I just wanted to make the point that just because something doesn't show up on a swab test culture doesn't mean it's not there. Since taking the ABs the pain is much better and I am now feeling better in myself as well.

I'm now certain that BV and/or strep B can be spread to the uterus during invasive procedures such as IVF, as I believe that this is what happened to me. Although I was diagnosed with BV, I know from experience that the symptoms I was having were an early uterine infection. I'm going to ask to have ABs at the time of ET next time as a precaution as I know both BV and Strep B can come back. I have also read that Strep B and BV be spread during pregnancy to the uterus, and that there is actually an anaerobic variant of strep B that can live in the uterus.

Hels, the links I found on Strep B and infertility and miscarriage are below. I hope they are useful, as a starting point at least. There don't seem to have been any large scale studies done on Strep B and miscarriage and infertility, but there are lots of references to Strep B playing a role in these areas. Personally I think this is something that needs to be looked at in greater depth. Again, I wish you all the very best for your pregnancy xx

http://www.fertilitysolution.com/Latest-Research/Habitual-Abortion-and-Group-B-Strep.html

http://www.fertilitysolution.com/Latest-Research/Miscarriages-Associated-with-Group-B-Strep.html

The man who has written the above articles, Dr. A Toth, has also written a book apparently. I haven't read it, but have seen people talking about it online. It's called: "Fertile Vs. Infertile: How Infections Affect Your Fertility And Your Baby's Health"

http://www.bbc.co.uk/health/physical_health/conditions/group_b_streptococcus_infection.shtml

Googling "strep B fertiltiy" or "strep B miscarriages" also brings up lots of results of posts from women who feel that strep B has played a major role.
 

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Hi all. I had a miscarriage at 22 weeks.  I went into hospital with somach pains, but earlier in the day I felt as if I was coming down with flu as I couldn't get warm and was shivering constantly.  Luckily, my brother and mother were at my house and when the stomach cramps were severe and I started to bleed, I knew I was inn difficulty. 

Whilst on the maternity ward in pain I wasn't scanned or checked and within a couple of hours of being there miscarried.  I was really quite ill.  On a IV drip of AB and had a temperature for several days.

It wasn't until my follow up with the consultant, after the post mortem  several months after(thank God I agreed to have one) that he said I had had GBS.  Never ever heard of it before.  I was shocked.  Racking my brains as to how I'd contracted it.  I made my GP test me for it, once I knew about it, which was negative, but that doesn't mean I won't get it again.

I've been told that when pregnant that the NHS only test when you're 35-37 weeks pregnant.  If I have a private test before and it's positve I'm hoping that if I'm prescribed AB that it won't harm the baby, as it's my uderstanding that they only give it to you when you're in labour.

Anyway, that's my encounter with GBS and I hope it won't rear it's head again
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Hi Carnivaldiva,


I'm so sorry to hear about your miscarriage and your infection.  That's awful that you weren't checked when you go to hospital.


It's fantastic news that you're expecting again (I see from your signature!) and many congratulations!!!

If you're worried about Strep B then I would probably have a test done privately, or if you are near a good NHS hospital with a good sexual health clinic you can have a swab test done there for no charge if your GP won't do one. This is what I did last week.  They don't do them routinely, but they did one for me as I was having symptoms of an infection and I asked for one.  I'm sure if you explained your history they would do one for you too.  I also think given your history some consultants would believe you should be monitored closely for strep B this time around as Hels mentions.  If your GP/ consultant doesn't think this is necessary, are you able to go to another one for a second opinion as Hels did?  You may well be negative for strep B but as you've had GBS it may be worthwhile to cover all bases.  It's up to you but I would probably request ABs during labour to be on the safe side as on the NHS it seems to be optional even for women who have already had problems with strep B.


I wish you all the best with your pregnancy and fx that your strep B is gone forever!


One small note about ABs - there are certain antibiotics that are fine to take in pregnancy so I wouldn't worry too much about that unless of course you are allergic to them.  I had to take them for many weeks during my pregnancy with my daughter and she was absolutely fine.  My sister also had to take strong antibiotics for nearly two months during pregnancy to prevent uterine infection as her waters broke at around 30 weeks and they kept her going until a C-section at 36 weeks and she and baby were fine too. 


Take care,
Pxx



 

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Thanks Peonie

Saw midwife this morning and she said that consultant will monitor me closely, however I won't get to see the consultant until I'm 16-20 weeks pregnant.  There's a very good private clinic not far from me, who did my initial scans.  I'm about 8 weeks 2 days pregnant, so I'm going to organise them to do a swab test.  The midwife today, said that they would test this am's urine sample for GBS, but I'm not relying on them.

Do you mind me asking how far into your pregnancy were you before you had your test?  In my last pregnancy I visited my GP a few times for thrush.  They took a swab and sent it off and it came back negative, but they obviously didn't check for GBS.

The midwife did say that if they dectect GBS this time round I'd be on a/several AB. 

Considering up to 30% of female pop have GBS, it really ought to be highlighted more.

I'm so glad another FF pointed me in the direction of this thread
 

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Hi Peonie

I am sorry it has me so long to reply. I typed a long post in reply the other night and it failed to post. The next night I typed a long reply to your PM and again it failed to post and I lost the lot. I think my internet connection is dodgy. Anyway here goes - 3rd time lucky.

I'm so sorry that your recent IVF wasn't successful. ^hugme^ Hopefully next time. ^pray^

Many thanks for your reply and info. Anyway I haven't made much progress since. I'm still on antibiotics and I feel much better. I haven't received my results as my swab was sent to a lab that is no longer in operation. I had an appointment with the consultant from last week to get a second swab taken but when I told him I was taking antibiotics he said there was no point, to finish the course of antibiotics and get a swab taken in a couple of weeks. He was really quite cross with me and gave me a telling off.

I was reading about the effectiveness of live yogurt in treating/ preventing BV. I am hoping it will help with group B too so I'm stocked up. http://www.fightagainstbv.com

CarnivalDiva - I'm so sorry about your little girl. ^hugme^ Congrats on your pregnancy. I wish you health and happiness throughout your pregnancy.

Take care everyone
Hels XX
 

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Hello Peonie,
I am new to the group and seen your post and had to read it. I too suffer from secondary infertility. My husband and I have been trying for 6 years to try to have another little one. When I was pregnant with my daughter 8 years ago, I was tested for Group B Strep and came back positive. When I went into labor I had to have antibiotics administered via IV. I did give birth to a very healthy baby girl. However, I was not aware that Strep B and secondary infertility were linked. I want to thank you for sharing this. I will be bringing this up to my doctor when I go here in a few weeks. Thank you again!!!
 
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