Neonatal Sepsis

Neonatal sepsis is a serious medical condition, that occurs in newborns, within the first 28 days of life. The infection is usually in the blood of your baby. However, it can impact any system or the entire body.

Symptoms of Neonatal Sepsis

The potential symptoms of neonatal sepsis include:

  • Fever (temperature increasing to 100.4 degrees Fahrenheit or over 38.1 degree Celsius)
  • Rapid breathing or breathing pauses
  • Not feeding well
  • Being irritable
  • Vomiting or diarrhoea
  • Pale appearance
  • Having a low body temperature despite being clothed or wrapped in blankets
  • Sleepy
  • Abnormal movements or reflexes

Causes of Neonatal Sepsis

Neonatal Sepsis is commonly caused by bacteria. However, other germs can also be the influencing factors. If the mother's amniotic fluid is infected, the baby is affected before birth. The newborn is exposed to the infection in the birth canal during delivery. A baby can also get infected in the hospital or at home after the baby is born.

Risk Factors For Neonatal Sepsis

The following things increase the risk of neonatal sepsis:

  • The baby is premature. It means a baby born before 37 weeks of pregnancy.
  • Mother having strep infection or infected amniotic fluid symptoms, like fever.
  • Your baby requires medical procedures, like a urinary catheter or central intravenous line.
  • Amniotic sac breakage more than 18 hours before birth.

Possible Complications of Neonatal Sepsis

The serious complications of neonatal sepsis include membrane infection surrounding the brain called meningitis. It can include symptoms like extreme sluggishness, coma, seizures, or bulging of the soft spot between the skull bones. If not treated properly, it can lead to death.

Prevention of Neonatal Sepsis

Neonatal Sepsis can be prevented by treating the expectant mother with IV antibiotics several hours before delivery. However, it is only possible if it is indicated by prenatal screens or clinical signs like maternal fever or uterine tenderness.

Remedies/Treatment of Neonatal Sepsis

To identify neonatal sepsis, the following diagnosis is essential:

  • Blood Culture- It is performed to check bacteria in the blood. Although the results will take a few days, the doctor will begin treating the baby instantly.
  • Urine Culture- It helps in diagnosing bacteria in the urinary system.
  • Blood Tests- This helps to examine any signs of infection and sepsis effects on kidneys, blood cells, and the liver.
  • X-rays or Other Imaging Cells- An X-ray is taken to check for any signs of lung infection.
  • Other Cultures- It is used to check bacteria in other places, like wounds.
  • Lumbar Puncture- It checks for brain or spinal cord infection.

The treatment for newborn sepsis will depend on the symptoms, age, and general health of your baby. It also includes how severe these symptoms are. The healthcare provider gives the baby antibiotics if he suspects sepsis. After getting the results from the diagnosis, the treatment changes. With antibiotics, the baby will be given fluids, other medications, oxygen, and nutrition.

Detecting and treating neonatal sepsis with antibiotics can prevent complications and ensure a good outcome. Ensure to be aware of the signs and risks associated with this condition for appropriate medical attention.

Request an appointment at Apollo Cradle, DELHI-NCR - Moti Nagar. Call 1860-500-1066 to book an appointment.

1. How long does it take to recover from neonatal sepsis?

If the baby is diagnosed with neonatal sepsis, the treatment should be commenced immediately. With prompt and appropriate treatment, a baby can recover within a few weeks. However, depending on the severity of the problem, some babies might also require a longer period of hospitalization and rehabilitation.

2. Can neonatal sepsis recur?

Neonatal sepsis can recur, especially if the underlying cause of the infection is not completely addressed.

3. Can neonatal sepsis lead to long-term health problems?

Preterm infants with late-onset sepsis history are at higher risk for neurodevelopmental delay and growth impairment in early infancy.

4. How is neonatal sepsis different from sepsis in adults?

Due to a newborn's underdeveloped immune system and other factors, neonatal sepsis is generally more serious than sepsis in adults.

5. Can neonatal sepsis transmit to others?

No, neonatal sepsis is not transmitted to others since it is caused due to bacteria entering the baby's body.

Book an Appointment




Pregnancy Calculator