Are people who have had Stevens-Johnson Syndrome at higher risk of developing COVID-19 (coronavirus)? Stevens-Johnson Syndrome is a severe adverse reaction to medication. Some people who have had SJS have no other health problems. For these people, it is believed that having had SJS:

• Does not increase the risk of getting COVID-19 AND • Does not increase the severity of COVID-19 Some people who have had SJS have other underlying health conditions that put them at higher risk for COVID-19. They may be taking medicines that also affect their immune system (for example, ACTH, steroids, immunotherapies). Or they may have other autoimmune diseases that affect their immunity. People in these situations are at greater risk of developing more severe symptoms with viral illnesses. People who have had SJS may have other medical problems that could place them at higher risk of developing more severe symptoms with COVID-19.

• For example, people who have problems swallowing or frequently inhale food or liquids into their lungs (aspiration) are at higher risk for pneumonia. • People with diabetes or underlying heart or lung problems also appear to be at higher risk for severe COVID-19. Regardless of your situation, it is important for anyone who has had SJS to talk to their treating health care provider about their individual risks and if any specific medical precautions are needed. It is recommended that everyone should practice social distancing and hand washing as well as follow the CDC’s Recommendations.
©2020 Stevens-Johnson Syndrome Foundation