Celine Dion Reveals Neurological Disorder Diagnosis

10 December 2022 | 11:38 am | Mary Varvaris

"While we’re still learning about this rare condition, we now know this is what’s been causing all of the spasms I’ve been having."

(Pic by Alix Malka)

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Celine Dion will reschedule her 2023 European tour dates and move them to 2024 due to her diagnosis of a neurological syndrome that's thought to be incurable.

"I’ve been dealing with problems with my health for a long time," the My Heart Will Go On singer began in a video statement explaining the postponement. "And it’s been really difficult for me to face these challenges and to talk about everything that I’ve been going through. 

"Recently, I’ve been diagnosed with a very rare neurological disorder called the stiff person syndrome, which affects something like one in a million people. While we’re still learning about this rare condition, we now know this is what’s been causing all of the spasms I’ve been having."

She continued, "Unfortunately, these spasms affect every aspect of my daily life, sometimes causing difficulties when I walk and not allowing me to use my vocal cords to sing the way I’m used to. It hurts me to tell you today that this means I won’t be ready to restart my tour in Europe in February."

The dates that would've occurred in May through July have been rescheduled to 2024, while the gigs from August until October are slated to go ahead as planned. 

In a message of hope and resilience, Dion shared that she's working with a sports medicine therapist to help her regain physical strength. Anti-anxiety and muscle relaxant drugs are believed to alleviate muscle spasms, the National Institute for Neurological Disorders details on its website. 

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The National Institute for Neurological Disorders says that Stiff Person Syndrome affects twice as many women as men. The disorder is often associated with autoimmune diseases such as type-1 diabetes, thyroiditis, vitiligo, and pernicious anemia.

While researchers are looking further into Stiff Person Syndrome, scientists presently don't know what causes the disorder. However, current research indicates that SPS stems from an autoimmune response gone awry in the brain and spinal cord. 

A dangerous factor about Stiff Person Diagnosis is that it's frequently misdiagnosed as Parkinson's Disease, multiple sclerosis, fibromyalgia, psychosomatic illness, or anxiety and phobia. This misdiagnosis costs people time and leaves them without the necessary answers and support.

In 2018, Dion brought John Farnham on stage to perform an excellent rendition of You're The Voice together. Check it out here.