Rare disease from medicine cabinet claims young mother’s life

Posted at 7:17 AM, Aug 23, 2014
and last updated 2014-08-23 07:17:00-04

Kalamazoo, Mich. – A Michigan family is sharing their story of a young mother who was struck down by a disease that many don’t know about.

24-year-old Cassandra Campbell’s family says she got the disease from some medicine she was taking for a bug bite, which spread quickly and took over her body, eventually killing her, according to Fox17.

The disease is called Stevens Johnson Syndrome or SJS. It’s an extremely rare disease that is most commonly caused by antibiotics like penicillin or Bactrim. It impacts less than 1 percent of the people who use them each year.

Cassandra died just three weeks after giving birth.

Cassie’s skin was essentially blistering, and falling off of her body. Doctors say once the disease starts, it’s treatable but not always curable. Even though the disease has been documented in literature for years, they are unsure what the singular ingredient in the medications is causing it. Essentially the tissue in her body was breaking down. In her final hours, doctors performed CPR on her three separate times.

“Then the doctors came up to me, and they just told me they were sorry and they couldn’t save her,” said her mother Cindy.