Sara PA

New Member
Stevens-Johnson Syndrome is the bad rash everyone gets so concerned about with Lamictal. It considered an allergic reaction that can be gotten from virtually any drug, including Tylenol. It is extremely rare but potentially fatal if not treated. Serious conditions are treated in the burn unit. In many cases, flu-like symptoms precede the rash by a couple of days.

Lamictal also has a benign rash as an adverse reaction. While the chances of getting S-J is slightly higher with Lamictal, the overwhelming majority of rashes that occur will be the benign one. IIRC, 80% of the people who get the benign rash can restart Lamictal with no problems.

For whatever reason, the incidence of S-J is higher in antiepileptic drugs than most other classes of drugs and higher when more than one is taken. S-J rarely occurs after the first 8 weeks of taking the medication, usually much sooner.

And, it seems, every rash anyone gets while taking the drug is blamed on the drug.

ETA: S-J is not usually fatal.


New Member
WOW, well so much information!! I really appreciate all of it, it's great! As someone mentioned, I did ask her GEN PRAC doctor about the switch and she said that it does take too long to kick in, that she would not be comfortable making a switch like that without the psychiatrist involvement. So, she DID say that this rash does NOT resemble the S-J-S rash, so she said that we should be safe at least from that, but she said that if she keeps having some of the other side effects of the medications, we might explore the Lithium option again another time with psychiatrist involvement.

No, the weird thing was and I will have to discuss this with her psychiatrist when she returns, the person who takes her calls while she is gone is her Clinician. She is the one that recommended I not give her the medications until doctor gets back, and then proceeded to tell me to keep the crisis number close by in case she crashes, so they can come get her and take her to the psychiatric hospital.

So, for the time being, we are instructed by the regular doctor to continue giving her the medications, especially since they are working well for her, she would hate to discontinue it and take a chance that something else might not help as much. But she did say to keep a CLOSE eye on things, and if the rash starts to get worse and she gets a fever or her mouth starts to swell, to take her straight to the ER, otherwise, she should be fine.

This was a little scary!!! I had no idea that ANYTHING like SJS even existed......


New Member
OH, yes and I DO love our pharmacist, he is GREAT and always does whatever he can to help, and the town that he is located in only has 2 pharmacies, and he is the only one that takes my daughter's insurance. There was ONE instance where he did not have her Rx in stock, so in stead of me going to the other Pharmacy and having to pay for it, he somehow managed to acquire some from the other pharmacy so that he could fill the Rx himself and bill the insurance, then when his order came in, he just replaced the other pharmacy's stock that he borrowed. He really goes above and beyond for his customers and he doesn't have many people working in the office, he usually answers the phone himself and talks to people as they come in....its really great!