Dilantin Stevens Johnson Syndrome Lawsuits

Harvey Kirk

By Harvey Kirk
Posted November 25, 2008


Epilepsy drugs phenytoin (marketed as Dilantin, Phenytek and available as a generic) and fosphenytoin sodium (marketed as Cerebyx and generics) have been linked to an increased risk of Stevens-Johnson Syndrome for individuals of Asian ancestry who carry the allele HLA-B*1502. The lawyers at Saiontz & Kirk, P.A. are investigating potential Stevens-Johnson Syndrome lawsuits for individuals who have suffered the severe skin reaction after taking these epilepsy drugs.

>>FDA LINK: Stevens Johnson Syndrome Warning

On November 24, 2008, the FDA warned that they are investigating preliminary data that suggests that side effects of Dilantin and the other epilepsy drugs may pose an increased risk of Stevens Johnson Syndrome and Toxic Epidermal Necrolysis for individuals who carry the allele, which is almost exclusively found in people with ancestry across broad areas of Asia, including Han Chinese, Filipinos, Malaysians, South Asian Indians and Thais.

In December 2007, a similar warning was issued about another epilepsy drug, carbamazepine, and Stevens-Johnson Syndrome.

As a result, Dilantin, Phenytek, Cerebyx and other generics have been recommended to some Asian patients as alternatives to cabamazeine for those who carry the allele HLA-B*1502. However, the FDA has notified heathcare providers that phenytoin and fosphenytoin should be avoided for individuals who test postive for HLA-B1502.

Stevens Johnson Syndrome, which in severe cases may be referred to as Toxic Epidermal Necrolysis, is a rare skin reaction which involves the development of blisters and burns which develop from under the skin. It can be fatal, and often requires treatment in an intensive care unit (ICU) or hospital burn unit.


A number of different medications have been associated with Stevens-Johnson Syndrome as an adverse reaction. The lawyers at Saiontz & Kirk, P.A. investigate potential cases for individuals diagnosed with SJS or TEN throughout the country. To review a potential case, request a free consultation and claim evaluation.

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