What is Stevens-Johnson Syndrome?
Stevens-Johnson syndrome (SJS) is a potentially fatal emergency medical condition that leaves many victims permanently blind and scarred. Many SJS victims are entitled by law to recover compensation, but they must be advised and represented by a national product liability lawyer.
According to the Department of Health and Human Services, Stevens-Johnson syndrome may affect up to two million people annually in the U.S. It almost always requires immediate hospitalization. Stevens-Johnson syndrome is typically a reaction to a prescription or over-the-counter drug. It usually causes flu-like symptoms and a painful rash that blisters and spreads.
The complications of Stevens-Johnson syndrome often include pneumonia, sepsis, dehydration, and multiple organ failure. The most severe form of Stevens-Johnson syndrome is called toxic epidermal necrolysis (TEN), a dangerous condition that has a fatality rate of 30 to 80 percent.
What Are the Symptoms of SJS?
The earliest symptoms of Stevens-Johnson syndrome may begin to emerge from 24 to 72 hours before a rash develops. These early symptoms may include fatigue, fever, burning eyes, and a sore throat and mouth.
As Stevens-Johnson syndrome continues to emerge, its other signs may include skin pain, a spreading purple or red rash, and blisters on the mucous membranes of the mouth, nose, eyes, and genitals. Several days after the blisters emerge, the skin usually begins to peel.
Drug-induced reactions may occur while you are taking a particular medicine or for as long as two weeks afterward. Stevens-Johnson syndrome requires emergency medical attention. You must obtain medical help promptly if you begin to experience the symptoms and signs of SJS.
What Causes SJS?
Stevens-Johnson syndrome may be caused by malignancies and viral infections, but more than 80 percent of the cases are caused by over-the-counter or prescription drugs, particularly antibiotics. However, researchers have reported that up to 200 different drugs – including common over-the-counter products like Advil and Tylenol – may also be associated with SJS.
SJS is believed to arise from an immune system disorder that is triggered by particular medicines or infections. Initial treatment for SJS is similar to treatment for thermal burn patients, and continued supportive care may include parenteral or nasogastric feeding and intravenous fluids.
SJS survivors will also need to consult immediately with an ophthalmologist because Stevens-Johnson syndrome often causes scar tissue to develop inside the eyelids, and that scar tissue may lead to a number of potential eyesight problems.
What Are an SJS Victim’s Legal Rights and Options?
The initial medical treatment and the long-term rehabilitative care for SJS victims can be exceedingly expensive, even if you have health insurance. If you develop Stevens-Johnson syndrome because a pharmaceutical company was negligent, a national product liability attorney can help you take legal action to recover compensation from that company.
In all fifty states, product liability laws entitle the injured victims of negligence to recover compensation for their current and projected future medical expenses, lost wages and projected future lost income, personal suffering and pain, and related damages and losses.
Will Your SJS Case Go to Trial?
A Stevens-Johnson syndrome attorney will review the medical records in your case and obtain testimony from your medical providers and expert medical authorities. Your attorney will then negotiate with the drug company for an acceptable out-of-court settlement of your claim.
That is how most product liability claims based on Stevens-Johnson syndrome are resolved, but if the liability in your case is disputed, or if no reasonable settlement offer is made by the drug company, your national product liability lawyer will take your injury claim before a trial jury.
At a product liability trial, your lawyer will tell the jury how (and how extensively) you were injured by Stevens-Johnson syndrome due to the drug company’s negligence, and your lawyer will then ask the jury to order the drug company to compensate you for your losses and damages.
When Should You Contact an Attorney?
Across the nation, a large number of product liability claims have recently been filed against the drug companies which make products that cause SJS. If you or someone you love has suffered from Stevens-Johnson syndrome, you should contact a national product liability attorney at once.
If you have developed Stevens-Johnson syndrome after taking a prescribed or over-the-counter medicine, you will need to file your product liability claim before the deadline set by your own state’s statute of limitations. In most states, that deadline is two, three, or four years.
If you have missed the filing deadline, it’s possible that your case may qualify as an exception. You may be able to file your product liability lawsuit in another state, though this is less likely as laws vary state to state. Our law office will collaborate with local lawyers, when beneficial to your SJS claim. Reach out to us to speak with a Stevens-Johnson syndrome attorney who will provide you with specific, personalized legal advice.
How Can You Afford a Lawyer?
If you have developed Stevens-Johnson syndrome, you are probably incurring costly medical bills at the same time that you are unable to work, and you need to recover compensation immediately. How will you be able to pay an attorney’s fee?
Most product liability lawyers represent their clients on a contingent fee basis, so finances do not have to prevent you from seeking justice. You pay no lawyer’s fee upfront, and you pay no lawyer’s fee until you recover compensation with a jury verdict or an out-of-court settlement.
Not every law firm has the resources or experience needed to challenge the large pharmaceutical corporations. If you are an SJS victim, you must be represented and advised by a lawyer who has considerable experience handling product liability claims against the largest drug companies.
Greg Jones Law Fights for Consumers’ Rights
When you call Greg Jones Law, you’ll receive personalized legal advice and learn about bringing a product liability claim in your own state. If you move forward with legal action and your claim succeeds, you’ll be compensated for your SJS-related medical expenses, lost wages, and more.
Product liability attorney Greg Jones handles SJS claims throughout the United States, and Greg Jones Law will evaluate your own case without cost or obligation. We work with a network of local attorneys across the nation to ensure the best representation for each of our clients.
If you or someone you love has been diagnosed with Stevens-Johnson syndrome after using any prescription or over-the-counter medication, contact Greg Jones Law as quickly as possible – from anywhere in the United States – by calling 855-566-3752 or 855-JONES-LAW.