Stevens-Johnson syndrome

Stevens-Johnson syndrome

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Stevens-Johnson syndrome is a serious adverse reaction of the skin and mucous membranes. Signs and symptoms include blisters, rash and skin pain.

Stevens-Johnson syndrome is a rare, serious disorder of your skin and mucous membranes. It’s usually a reaction to a medication or an infection. Often, it begins with flu-like symptoms, followed by a painful red or purplish rash that spreads and blisters. Then the top layer of the affected skin dies, sheds and then heals.

Stevens-Johnson syndrome is a medical emergency that usually requires hospitalization. Treatment focuses on eliminating the underlying cause, controlling symptoms and minimizing complications as your skin regrows.

Recovery after Stevens-Johnson syndrome can take weeks to months, depending on the severity of your condition. If it was caused by a medication, you’ll need to permanently avoid that drug and others closely related to it.

Stevens-Johnson syndrome signs and symptoms include:

If you have Stevens-Johnson syndrome, several days before the rash develops you may experience:

Stevens-Johnson syndrome requires immediate medical attention. Seek emergency medical care if you experience signs and symptoms of this condition.

Stevens-Johnson syndrome is a rare and unpredictable reaction. Your doctor may not be able to identify its exact cause, but usually the condition is triggered by a medication or an infection. A reaction to medication may start while you’re using it or up to two weeks after you’ve stopped using it.

Drugs that can cause Stevens-Johnson syndrome include:

Infections that can cause Stevens-Johnson syndrome include:

Factors that increase your risk of developing Stevens-Johnson syndrome include:

Stevens-Johnson syndrome complications include:

If you’ve had this condition, avoid the medication that triggered it. If you’ve had Stevens-Johnson syndrome and your doctor told you it was caused by a medication, avoid that drug and others like it. This is key to preventing a recurrence, which is usually more severe than the first episode and can be fatal.

Your family members also might want to avoid this drug because some forms of this condition have a genetic risk factor.

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Stevens-Johnson syndrome

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