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Virus Induced Erythema Multiforme and Stevens-Johnson Syndrome

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Erythema Multiforme is an acute, self-limited inflammatory cutaneous disorder characterized by distinctive target lesions. Stevens-Johnson syndrome (SJS) is defined as severe erythema multiforme with mucosal involvement, visceral involvement, or both. Both diseases are part of a continuum of immunologically mediated mucocutaneous diseases at various grades of severity. Viral infections are known triggers of these skin disorders. We report the success of a management strategy of acyclovir and prednisone for herpes simplex virus-associated erythema multiforme. In addition we describe the apparent first case of primary varicella infection as a direct cause of SJS. The two cases are presented and a single-case statistical analysis has been employed to evaluate the significance of the management protocol. The method of analysis is presented in the appendix. When a patient with primary varicella infection develops bullous lesions, SJS should be considered in the differential diagnosis, as early and intense corticosteroid therapy may be life-saving. A regimen of prophylactic acyclovir and therapy for an exacerbation of herpetic lesions with acyclovir and prednisone was effective in inducing significant control of recurrent erythema multiforme secondary to herpes simplex in our patient.
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Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: 1995-07-01

More about this publication?
  • Allergy and Asthma Proceedings is a peer reviewed publication dedicated to distributing timely scientific research regarding advancements in the knowledge and practice of allergy, asthma and immunology. Its primary readership consists of allergists and pulmonologists.

    The goal of the Proceedings is to publish articles with a predominantly clinical focus which directly impact quality of care for patients with allergic disease and asthma.

    Featured topics include asthma, rhinitis, sinusitis, food allergies, allergic skin diseases, diagnostic techniques, allergens, and treatment modalities. Published material includes peer-reviewed original research, clinical trials and review articles.

    Articles marked "F" offer free full text for personal noncommercial use only.

    The journal is indexed in Thomson Reuters Web of Science and Science Citation Index Expanded, plus the National Library of Medicine's PubMed service.
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