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Stevens-Johnson syndrome

Other Names for this Disease
  • Erythema multiforme major
  • SJS
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What are the signs and symptoms of Stevens-Johnson syndrome?

Often, Stevens-Johnson syndrome begins with flu-like symptoms, followed by a painful red or purplish rash that spreads and blisters, eventually causing the top layer of the skin to die and shed.[1] To be classified as Stevens-Johnson syndrome, the condition must involve less than 10% of the body surface area.[2] The condition is characterized by painful, blistery lesions on the skin and the mucous membranes (the thin, moist tissues that line body cavities) of the mouth, throat, genital region, and eyelids. It can also cause serious eye problems, such as severe conjunctivitis; iritis, an inflammation inside the eye; corneal blisters and erosions; and corneal holes. In some cases, the ocular complications from this condition can be disabling and lead to severe vision loss.[3]
Last updated: 6/11/2013

  1. Stevens-Johnson syndrome. 2009; Accessed 3/15/2010.
  2. Roujeau JC. Stevens-Johnson syndrome. Orphanet. 2009; Accessed 3/15/2010.
  3. Facts About The Cornea and Corneal Disease. National Eye Institute (NEI). 2010; Accessed 3/15/2010.