The Mayo Clinic says doctors can frequently identify Stevens-Johnson syndrome based on medical history, a physical exam and the condition’s distinctive signs and symptoms. Doctors may also take a skin sample for examination under a microscope.
However it’s diagnosed, Stevens-Johnson syndrome is considered a medical emergency and requires hospitalization, frequently in an intensive care unit or burn unit. It’s usually an allergic reaction in response to medication, infection or illness, and can cause the top layer of skin to shed and die.
The first and most important step in treating Stevens-Johnson syndrome, according to the Mayo Clinic, is discontinuing any medications that may be causing it. Doctor may recommend that patients stop taking all nonessential medications, because it can be difficult determining which specific ones are causing the condition.
At the moment, no standard recommendations exist for treating Stevens-Johnson syndrome. But medical professionals may provide supportive care in the hospital, including:
— Fluid replacement and nutrition. Skin loss can cause significant loss of fluid from the body, so replacing fluids is an important part of treatment. Patients may receive fluids and nutrients through a tube placed through the nose that goes to the stomach.
— Wound care. Cool, wet compresses soothe blisters as they heal. Medical professionals may gently remove dead skin, and then place a dressing with a topical anesthetic over the affected areas.
— Eye care. Stevens-Johnson syndrome carries a risk of eye damage, so treatment should include consultation with an eye specialist.
If you or a loved one have suffered from the condition, you should consult with a Stevens-Johnson Syndrome attorney at Lopez McHugh to evaluate whether you have a claim.
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