DefinitionBy Mayo Clinic staff
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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.
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