A person suffering with Stevens-Johnson syndrome often has many concerns. When a diagnosis of a heart murmur is added to the equation it can be equally as confusing and scary. Someone who finds themselves suffering with both often wonders are Stevens-Johnson syndrome and heart murmur related. The answer is no. Yet they are both complex conditions that are not necessarily life-threatening but may possibly require attention.
Stevens-Johnson syndrome is considered rare. It is a skin and mucous membrane disorder that is indeed serious and could be potentially life-threatening if not treated. The top layer of skin can begin to flake, die, and shred. While this is a scary prognosis with immediate medical treatment Stevens-Johnson syndrome does not have to be deadly.
The symptoms of Stevens-Johnson syndrome include sore throat, fever, and other symptoms commonly attributed to the flu. Later blister-like lesions will appear in the mucous membrane areas which can include the eyes. These lesions will appear in other areas of the body as well. There can also be swelling of the face and tongue and pain.
Stevens-Johnson syndrome can have several causes. Several infections have been associated with this condition such as human immune deficiency syndrome, hepatitis, influenza, typhoid, diphtheria, herpes, Epstein Barr virus, and more. Stevens-Johnson syndrome can also be caused by medications which include antibiotics, anti-seizure medications, sulfa drugs, and more. It is important that prior to beginning any medication to thoroughly understand the potential side effects and discuss these with a doctor. Radiation is another possible cause.
A heart murmur is simply an unusual or extra sound during the heartbeat. Generally this is found by a doctor using a stethoscope. While many heart murmurs are not signs of heart trouble some can be. Heart murmurs that do not require treatment are completely harmless and therefore are not cause for alarm. Unfortunately heart murmurs can be a sign of a serious heart condition including narrowing and leaking of heart valves and passages. Treatments for heart murmurs can range from no treatment to surgery and should be overseen by a doctor.
Stevens-Johnson syndrome and heart murmurs are not symptoms of each other or causes of either disease. Yet they do have one thing in common, if you experience either then it is best to consult with a physician. Regular doctor visits and physical check-ups can contribute to overall health and assist in preventing complications from medications. If diagnosed with either condition it is important to always alert a physician to any medication taken as this could be a potential cause.
Mayo Clinic: Stevens-Johnson syndrome – https://www.mayoclinic.com/health/stevens-johnson-syndrome/DS00940
Skin Association: What is Stevens Johnson Syndrome? – https://www.skinassn.org/what-is-stevens-johnson-syndrome.html
National Heart Lung and Blood Institute: Heart Murmur – https://www.nhlbi.nih.gov/health/dci/Diseases/heartmurmur/hmurmur_what.html