Erythema Multiforme

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Erythema multiforme is a medical condition characterized by inflammation of the skin or mucous membranes (including the mouth, throat and eyes). Erythema multiforme has been reported following infection.

It is the name applied to a group of hypersensitivity disorders, affecting mostly children and young adults, and characterized by symmetric red, patchy lesions, primarily on the arms and legs. The cause is unknown, but EM frequently occurs in association with herpes simplex virus, suggesting an immunologic process initiated by the virus. In half of the cases, the triggering agents appear to be medications, including anticonvulsants, sulfonamides, nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, and other antibiotics. In addition, some cases appear to be associated with infectious organisms such as mycoplasma pneumoniae and many viral agents.

Symptoms persist anywhere from 2 days to 4 weeks and include skin lesions, blisters, itching, fatigue, joint pain and fever.[1]