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What's the difference between early-onset and late-onset neonatal sepsis?

Early-onset and late-onset neonatal sepsis both involve a bacterial infection that overwhelms the infant's immune system. By definition, early-onset sepsis occurs within the first week after birth, whereas late-onset sepsis occurs after the first week (but usually in the first three months). The infection in early-onset sepsis is usually transmitted from the mother, either in utero due to disease or damage, or in childbirth, due to infections in the birth canal or rectum. Late-onset sepsis is acquired from the infant's surroundings: frequently, it can result from other procedures the baby gets in the hospital.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.