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According to the Ministry of Health, Singapore:
– Group B Streptococcus (GBS) is a common bacterium found in the human gut and urinary tract of about 15 to 30 per cent of adults without causing disease.
– However, GBS may occasionally cause infections of the skin, joints, heart and brain.
– Underlying chronic or co-morbid (co-occuring) conditions, such as diabetes, increase one’s risk of getting infected.
– GBS can also be found in fish, but this does not pose an issue if the fish is well cooked before consumption.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in the US:
– Group B Streptococcus is a type of bacteria that causes illness in people of all ages.
– Also known as GBS or baby strep, group B strep disease in newborns most commonly causes sepsis (infection of the blood), pneumonia (infection in the lungs), and sometimes meningitis (infection of the fluid and lining around the brain).
– The most common problems caused by group B strep in adults are bloodstream infections, pneumonia, skin and soft-tissue infections, and bone and joint infections.
– Rarely in adults, group B strep can cause meningitis (infection of the fluid and lining surrounding the brain).
– Serious group B strep infections in adults can be fatal. On average, eight per cent of adults with invasive group B strep infections (infections where the bacteria have entered a part of the body that is normally not exposed to bacteria) die.
– Risk of death is lower among younger adults, and adults who do not have other medical conditions.
Read more about GBS infection in adults here.