Stevens-Johnson syndrome is a rare, serious disorder in which your skin and mucous membranes react severely to a medication or infection. 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 your skin to die and shed.

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

Recovery after Stevens-Johnson syndrome can take weeks to months, depending on the severity of your condition. If your doctor determines that your case of Stevens-Johnson syndrome was caused by medication, you'll need to permanently avoid the medication and all others related to it.

Apr. 09, 2011