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

  • Viral infections. Your risk of Stevens-Johnson syndrome may be increased if you have an infection caused by a virus, such as herpes, viral pneumonia, HIV or hepatitis.
  • Weakened immune system. If you have a weakened immune system, you may have an increased risk of Stevens-Johnson syndrome. Your immune system can be affected by an organ transplant, HIV/AIDS and autoimmune diseases, such as lupus.
  • A history of Stevens-Johnson syndrome. If you've had a medication-related form of this condition, you are at risk of a recurrence if you use that drug again.
  • A family history of Stevens-Johnson syndrome. If an immediate family member has had Stevens-Johnson syndrome or a related condition called toxic epidermal necrolysis, you may be more susceptible to developing Stevens-Johnson syndrome too.
  • Having a certain gene. If you have a gene called HLA-B 1502, you have an increased risk of Stevens-Johnson syndrome, particularly if you take certain drugs for seizures or mental illness. Families of Chinese, Southeast Asian or Indian descent are more likely to carry this gene.
Apr. 22, 2014