Amy, mum to Teddy, says:
“At 36 weeks, my midwife told us of a trial [GBS3] they were doing to know if a pregnant woman was carrying strep B. This is the first time I had ever heard of strep B. This was not something mentioned to me during my first pregnancy with Ronnie. The results came back positive.
I did a lot of research into it and was told I would have antibiotics* in labour; however, once I was in active labour, I gave birth within an hour and they didn’t have time to get the antibiotics into me. However, they continued to monitor Teddy for 12 hours after birth. Teddy was a healthy baby boy, and we brought him home the same evening he was born. His brother Ronnie loved him from the get-go.
The day Teddy turned one month old was like any other day. I had spent the afternoon at my mum’s and left around 6pm. Teddy started to cry at around 7pm, which wasn’t anything out of the ordinary as he was quite a colicky baby. He fell to sleep in my arms, and we went to bed around 10pm. He didn’t have his bottle like normal. I woke up at midnight and had the urge to take his temp. It was 39 degrees. I packed a bag and went to A&E.
His condition worsened in the 15 mins it had taken me to get to the hospital. His breathing had now gone strange, and his skin had changed colour. They immediately knew something was wrong and got him hooked up to oxygen and antibiotics.
Teddy was then sedated and blue-lighted to a nearby children’s intensive care unit. Here we were told that Teddy’s blood cultures had returned positive for strep B sepsis with suspected meningitis. It was very very hit-and-miss as his heart rate was super high. He also had two blood transfusions. Eventually, all his stats came back to normal.
We were told that Teddy was on the road to recovery, so we were over the moon. However, that happiness soon turned to sadness as his soft spot (fontanelle) started to swell, and he was taken for an MRI. Here we came to realise that the infection had affected his whole brain.
We got taken into a side room and knew it wouldn’t be good news. We were told that the damage to his brain was so bad that as soon as the machines were all turned off his body wouldn’t be able to breathe on its own.
Teddy fought right to the very end. His dad, Jack, and I had to make the heart-breaking decision to turn off his machines. Even after this, Teddy fought longer than what the doctors thought. Unfortunately, Teddy passed away in our arms, being only five weeks old. Leaving us all devastated.”
*Although antibiotics in labour will prevent most early-onset group B Strep infections, they cannot prevent those developing after the first week of life.