Episode: Hannah's Story: How an Antibiotic Took Her Life at 17

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Hannah's Story: How an Antibiotic Took Her Life at 17
hannahs-story-how-an-acne-antibiotic-took-her-life-at-17Acne has such a huge impact on children. For some, like Hannah, it meant loss of life. Find out which medication to avoid when treating acne.Nancy Szakacsy's daughter Hannah went to the dermatologist because she, like most teens, had acne.

This particular visit to the dermatologist was to get a facial, but Hannah ended up leaving with a prescription for an antibiotic called Minocycline. Hannah and her mother trusted their doctor when they were told that this antibiotic was safe to take and that it would help Hannah's acne.  

Hannah was on the drug for 21 days when she woke up at a friend's sleepover with huge swollen glands. Over the next few days she developed a rash.  

The doctor wasn't sure what was wrong with Hannah and suspected she may have mono. After another two weeks of waiting for a diagnosis, Hannah developed more symptoms and was then put on steroids. This approach seemed to be working and the doctor started lowering her doses of the steroids.

But, she experienced heart failure right on the doctor's table.  

Hannah lost her life at the age of 17 from DRESS Syndrome, which stands for Drug Reaction Eosinophilia Systemic Symptoms, from the antibiotic she was prescribed by her dermatologist. 

Nancy shares her horrifying story with Dr. Kaskel to warn parents about the dangers of antibiotics. Her baseline advice? Don't just trust what your doctor says; do your research before you put your child on this or any other antibiotic.

Today, there are so many doctors that do not recognize DRESS, so it's still considered rare; but Nancy is speaking out and wants to change this. DRESS goes back to 1959, she explains, and even if it's considered rare, when it happens to you, it doesn't seem very rare anymore.

Hannah's story is a perfect example of how we should be more careful and ask ourselves "do I really need this drug?" because it could be a matter of life or death.

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