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Miraculous recovery of teenager who grew back her face after suffering 'one-in-a-million' allergic reaction to paracetamol

A teenager has grown back her entire face after being struck down by a rare skin disease.Eva Uhlin, 19, suffered a bizarre one-in-a-million allergic reaction to household paracetamol that left her unrecognisable.
The potentially fatal condition - Toxic Epidermal Necrolysis - gripped her entire body, causing her skin to burn up and scab over before falling off.

Eva Uhlin
New face: Eva Uhlin suffered a bizarre one-in-a-million allergic reaction to household paracetamol that left her unrecognisable

The illness left the Swede, who currently works as a waitress, lying in a hospital bed for weeks as it ran its devastating course.
Forty per cent of people who contract the disease do not survive.
Now, more than four years later, Miss Uhlin is finally comfortable revealing her face to the world for the first time after completely growing back all her skin.
Her nightmare began as a 15-year-old in September 2005 when she suddenly fell ill while holidaying in her home country.

She was diagnosed with a fever and told to take a couple of paracetamol tablets to relieve her symptoms.
But the combination of her virus and the drug created a reaction nobody could have predicted, triggering a disease that has taken Miss Uhlin years to fully recover from.
She woke up the next day to find blisters covering her face and spreading over the rest of her body.
The teenager was rushed to the University Hospital of Linkoping on September 12, where she was admitted to the burns unit.
Doctors immediately gave her morphine and applied soothing ointment to her face and chest.
But her skin began to fall off on a doctor's fingertips as he examined her eyes.

Eva Uhlin
All smiles: Miss Uhlin has grown back her face, from which she had lost most of the surface

Over the next few years she lost most of the surface of her face. Parts of her chest, arms, back and stomach also fell away and she even lost her eyelashes, fingernails, toenails and some of her hair.
Miss Uhlin said: 'It felt like something was crawling around under my skin, I was in total shock - it was like something out of a horror film.
'I couldn't believe what was happening, I had taken paracetamol many times before and doctors still aren't sure why I had this extreme reaction to it on that occasion.
'It was terrifying, because at the time they didn't know what was wrong with me or what would happen to me.
'When I looked in the mirror for the first time after it happened I didn't recognise myself.
'I've always been a positive person, and I didn't let myself think about the chance that my skin would never be normal again.
'I thought to myself - this is what has happened and now I have to deal with this.
'As well as the pain, the affect that the reaction had on my confidence for that time was pretty terrible. I was so ashamed of the way I looked, I hated anybody to see me.'
Fifteen doctors examined Miss Uhlin in her first 48 hours in hospital.
At one point during her month-long stay her mouth and lips were so badly damaged they grew together. The resulting pain meant she was unable to sleep for most of the time.
Miss Uhlin was discharged in October 2005 but had to return to hospital for regular check-ups on her skin and eyes for months.
Today, she still takes eye drops twice a day and has skin remains sensitive to bright sunlight.
Professor Folke Sjvberg, who treated Miss Uhlin, said he was pleased she had made such a good recovery.
He said: 'The condition is very uncommon and it strikes only one in a million people.
'When it is really bad it manifests itself in the way it had done with Eva. At its worst it covers all the skin on the body and can scab over the eyes and mouth.
'In very basic layman's terms the skin reacts against itself because of the allergic reaction - it is very much like a burn injury, although it does tend to heal much better.
'It was caused by the combination of a paracetamol and a viral infection Eva was suffering from at the time.
'It is treated like a burn with pain relief and fluid replacement, you just have to try and make the skin function properly again.
'With this condition you have to just let it run its course because there is no way to stop it.'
The skin disease can kill and 40 per cent of sufferers do not survive the condition, due to the fact it leaves patients vulnerable to other dangerous infections.
It is also known as Lyell's syndrome and is characterised by the detachment of the top layer of skin from the lower layers all over the body.

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