Valdecoxib-induced toxic epidermal necrolysis in a patient allergic to sulfa drugs

Pharmacotherapy. 2003 Apr;23(4):551-3. doi: 10.1592/phco.23.4.551.32118.


A 55-year-old Caucasian woman with a previously documented sulfa allergy was admitted to the hospital after she developed toxic epidermal necrolysis; she had been taking valdecoxib for 8 days for knee pain. Four days later, her bullous lesions had progressed to 45-50% of her body surface area. She was transferred to a burn unit for aggressive wound care and fluid hydration. Valdecoxib, a cyclooxygenase-2 inhibitor, is a benzenesulfonamide prescribed for arthritis pain and inflammation, and dysmenorrhea. Clinicians should exercise caution when prescribing valdecoxib to patients who are allergic to sulfa drugs.

Publication types

  • Case Reports

MeSH terms

  • Drug Hypersensitivity / diagnosis
  • Drug Hypersensitivity / therapy*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Isoxazoles / adverse effects*
  • Middle Aged
  • Stevens-Johnson Syndrome / diagnosis
  • Stevens-Johnson Syndrome / etiology*
  • Stevens-Johnson Syndrome / therapy*
  • Sulfonamides / adverse effects*


  • Isoxazoles
  • Sulfonamides
  • valdecoxib