Blood infection in newborns: dangers incalculable -

Blood infection in newborns: dangers incalculable

Blood infection in newborns occur in young children under 90 days of age. Symptoms early onset usually appears within 24-48 hours after birth. If late onset, the signs of the disease slows down most will happen after 3 months.

Blood infection in the newborn is a disease extremely dangerous. In 2011, worldwide there 360.346 babies died of blood infections and other infections. The following article provides information that revolves around this disease to you note, and consciously protect their children.

Cause of blood infection in newborns

Blood infection in babies can be due to bacteria such as Escherichia coli (E coli), Listeria and certain strains of streptococci,especially streptococcus group B (GBS), cause.

Disease, blood infections in newborn infants divided into 2 types:

Early onset (within 48 hours of life)

  • The rate of infection occurs blood in boys and girls equally
  • Risk of high mortality (10-30%)
  • Mainly transmitted through child during the mother pregnancy and childbirth
  • More than 80% of cases are due to streptococci group B (GBS) and gram-negative bacteria cause

The factors in the reproductive cycles of the mother increases the risk of blood infection in newborns (especially stage early onset):

  • Breaking amniotic fluid early
  • Premature
  • The mother suffered from a number of viruses such as rubella, herpes
  • Streptococcal infection group B (GBS)

Late onset (after the first 48 hours)

  • More dominant in boys
  • Infants weighing under 1kg are at higher risk
  • Mortality about 5%
  • Occurs mainly during baby’s hospitalization after birth or after about with the family
  • 70% are due to staphylococcus, golden Staphylococcus and 10-15% due to gram-negative bacteria cause

The risk factors of blood infection in babies late onset is:

  • Use venous catheter for long time (over 10 days) when the child is in the hospital
  • Equipment, medical instruments or utensils used for contaminated
  • Do not wash hands before contact with baby
  • To baby in the environment is not hygienic


Signs of blood infection in newborn babies are often nonspecific and confused with many other diseases such as respiratory failure, metabolic disorders…

Common characteristics in children blood infection is:

  • Pale skin, jaundice
  • High fever over 38oC or lower temperature below 35oC
  • Hypoglycemia or hyperglycemia
  • Acidosis (acidity in the body exceeds the normal level)

In addition, there are other symptoms of the upper respiratory tract such as:

  • Increase respiratory rate
  • Apnea
  • Cyanosis

The symptoms on the cardiovascular system:

  • Tachycardia or slower than normal
  • Low blood pressure

Skin symptoms:

  • Petechiae
  • Bruising

Symptoms on the digestive tract:

  • Eat poorly
  • Vomiting
  • Abdominal distention
  • Loose stools

Symptoms central nervous system:

  • Sleepy or asleep li packaging
  • Crying harassment constantly
  • Seizures

Tests and diagnosis

Tests in the laboratory will help to diagnose and determine the cause of blood infection in newborns.

The tests for the newborn blood infection include:

  • Implantation bleeding
  • C-reactive Protein (CRP)
  • Total analysis of blood cells (CBC)

If the baby has symptoms of a blood infection, sometimes the doctor will make the method a lumbar puncture to consider the kind of bacteria which cause disease.

When the mother has a history of herpes virus infection, the child will be conducted cultured skin, stool and urine to find out whether this virus can be transmitted from mother to baby or not.

A chest X-ray is conducted in case the baby is coughing or difficulty in breathing.


Treatment of blood infection in newborns by combining 2 therapy:

  • Antibiotic therapy
  • Therapy support

Blood infection has clinical manifestations are nonspecific and the consequences of it affects very quickly to young. So, to avoid the disease turn for the worse, the child should be treated with antibiotics immediately. Then, the doctor will depending on the test results and location of infection that regulate antibiotic more suitable.

If the infant whose test results are negative, you can stop taking the antibiotic within 48 hours (72 hours for young teen months).

The supportive therapy combined with treatment with antibiotics for children is:

  • Track and respiratory support for the child (breathing apparatus, located the cage oxygen)
  • Monitor oxygen saturation, heart rate and blood pressure
  • Adjust fluids, electrolytes, glucose and blood in the body young
  • For the child in incubator

In infections blood, early onset, initial treatment includes ampicillin and aminoglycoside. Cefotaxime is used instead for aminoglycoside if the baby is accompanied by meningitis due to gram-negative bacteria cause. Antibiotics will be changed as soon as identified microorganisms which cause disease.

For blood infection late-onset acquired in the community, the baby should be treated with ampicillin in collaboration with gentamicin or cefotaxime. If the baby is more meningitis, need to use a combination of ampicillin, cefotaxime and aminoglycoside.

For children with a blood infection late-onset acquired in the hospital, the initial treatment should consist of vancomycin plus aminoglycoside.

The prevention and control of blood infection in newborns

Take preventative antibiotics for the mother

Pregnant women need to take preventative antibiotics in the case:

  • Meningitis
  • Streptococcal infection group B (GBS)
  • History of having children with sepsis in pregnancy ago
  • Breaking amniotic fluid early

Prevent infection of the blood transmitted from mother to child during childbirth

Ways to help prevent infection of the blood transmitted from mother to child include:

  • Choose clean hospital to give birth to.
  • Birth within 12-24 hours since rupture of membranes (caesarean section should be performed within 4-6 hours after rupture of membranes)
  • Stretcher must be sterilized, hand trap should be washed and sterile gloves.

Ensure hygiene in the place where the child care

Prevent disease-causing microorganisms in contact with the child in the process of care in hospital and at home by:

  • Regular sanitary living environment of the child
  • Sterilization of personal items of the baby properly
  • Nurse, nursing should wash hands before contact with children.

You may be interested in the topic:

  • Blood infection (sepsis)
  • 6 signs of infection, blood silent
  • Learn about the stages of infection of the blood

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