Group B Strep Explained

Group B Strep Explained is the second edition of a popular book by Dr Sara Wickham. It helps parents, professionals and others to understand the issues and the evidence relating to the screening and prophylactic measures offered in the hope of preventing early-onset group B strep (EOGBS) disease.


What’s it all about?

Group B strep is a common and usually harmless bacterium, but it can very occasionally cause serious disease in newborn babies. Many pregnant women are offered testing and treatment for GBS, but there are pros and cons to this, especially as the main treatment involves giving intravenous antibiotics to many women during labour.

In this book, Dr Sara Wickham discusses the different perspectives on and approaches to GBS. She compares the different kinds of screening and treatment that are available for GBS. The book also discusses wider issues, the answers to parents’ most frequently asked questions and much more.


buy from am uk buttonThe book is now available from good bookstores or you can buy it online from Amazon Australia, Amazon UK,, Germany, France, Spain, Italy, Japan, Canada, and Mexico.

It’s also available as an ebook, on Kindle, Kobo and a whole host of other ebook retailers.

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The older edition of this book is now out-of-date, especially in relation to the UK guidance in this area. The new book has also been updated following the publication of new research studies. For example the BMJ paper showing universal screening for GBS may do more harm than good.


What’s new?

This second edition, published in May 2019, has been expanded and updated. In the previous (2014) version of the book, I focused very much on the approach used in the UK. This version has been significantly expanded. I discuss both the approaches used to screen for and prevent EOGBS disease. That makes it more relevant to those in other countries as well. It has also been revised to reflect the changes to the RCOG Green-top guidance in this area. I discuss two significant new reviews which emerged in early 2019.


Other new aspects in the 2019 edition include:

  • More information on culture-based and risk-based screening. I discuss the differences between the two approaches and a discussion of what happens in areas which mix the two approaches.
  • An entirely new section on culture-based (or universal) screening for GBS. I discuss what this entails and the evidence that relates to it. The updated book considers new research which has compared this and the risk-based approach.
  • Revised and expanded information on the situation in the UK. Important as the RCOG Green-top guidance on this topic has significantly changed since the last edition was published.
  • Updated information on private testing, PCR testing, alternatives to antibiotics and discussion about other approaches and future possibilities. Along with a discussion of the evidence for these.


About the Author

Dr Sara Wickham is a midwife, author, educator and researcher. She has been writing and lecturing about birth and midwifery for more than twenty years.

Sara is the author or editor of fifteen books and has edited three midwifery journals. She provides in-person and online educational and consultancy services for midwifery, medical and health-related practitioners and organisations around the world.


A Few Frequently Asked Questions

buy from am uk buttonWhere can I get it?

This book is available from Amazon and good bookstores. I will also have copies with me at my workshops and events.


buy from am us buttonHow much is it?

The recommended retail price will be UK £10.00.


Will it be available as an e-book?

Yes, there is a Kindle version. Available from Amazon UK, US, Australia, Germany, France, Spain, Italy, The Netherlands, Japan, Brazil, Canada, Mexico and India.

Please be aware that the old edition is still available on Kindle, but is now out-of-date. You can check whether you are looking at the old or new edition by the cover.


I’m really happy to be able to put these books together. And I am always delighted when people tell me that my books help them or their clients. I very much hope that this update will help more people to understand the issues and make the decision that is right for them in relation to GBS screening and prophylaxis.


Want more information on group B strep? Here’s my GBS information hub:

Group B Strep resources