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Stevens-Johnson Syndrome
Oct 8, 2006

Is it true that some one who has had Stephen Johnson's Syndrome should not or cannot take HIV meds?

Response from Dr. Luzuriaga

Stevens-Johnson syndrome (SJS) is a severe hypersensitivity (allergic) reaction that involves a skin rash and ulcerations of the mucous membranes of the eyes, mouth, etc. SJS can occur as a response to a medication and can be fatal if the associated medication is not stopped. SJS has been associated with nevirapine (Viramune) therapy, but fewer than 1% of individuals who are treated with nevirapine develop SJS.

If you have had SJS in the past, you would certainly not want to take the medication that caused the reaction, nor would you want to take any medication that was chemically similar. However, there are quite a few available antiretrovirals, many of which would probably have little risk of cross-reaction. I would advise you to discuss this with your care provider to determine what your options are.

More than one strain of HIV?

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