Céline Dion Reveals Diagnosis of Rare Neurological Disease—“It’s Been a Struggle”

Videos by American Songwriter

Videos by American Songwriter

“As you know, I’ve always been an open book and I wasn’t ready to say anything before, but I’m ready now,” said Celine Dion, sharing an emotional video with fans about her health.

On Thursday (Dec. 8), the 54-year-old pop icon revealed she has been diagnosed with a rare and incurable neurological disease, called Stiff Person Syndrome.

“I’ve been dealing with problems with my health for a long time,” the Canadian singer shared in the video posted to her Instagram account. “And it’s been really difficult for me to face these challenges and to talk about everything that I’ve been going through.”

She continued, “Recently, I’ve been diagnosed with a very rare neurological condition called Stiff Person Syndrome, which affects something like one in a million people. While we’re still learning about this rare condition, we now know that this is what has been causing all of the spasms that I’ve been having.

“Unfortunately, these spasms affect every aspect of my daily life,” Dion explained. “Sometimes causing difficulties when I walk and not allowing me to use my vocal cords to sing the way I’m used to.”

Dion’s condition has forced her to either postpone or cancel many of her upcoming concert dates.

“It hurts me to tell you today that this means I won’t be ready to start my tour in Europe in February,” she said.

Dates for the spring of 2023 have been rescheduled. Shows originally slated for Feb. 24 to April 11 will be moved to Mar. 6 to Apr. 22, 2024. Eight of her upcoming summer shows—previously scheduled from May 31 to Jul. 17—have been cancelled altogether. As of now, her Aug. 26 to Oct. 4, 2023 dates will remain as scheduled. Find updates about live shows, HERE.

Dion revealed that she is working hard on her recovery. “For me to reach you again, I have no choice but to concentrate on my health at this moment. And I have hope that I’m on the road to recovery. This is my focus and I’m doing everything I can to recuperate.”

She concluded her message with “I want to thank you so much for your encouraging wishes of love and support on my social media. This means a lot to me.” In tears, she sent her love to fans, adding “I really hope I can see you again real soon. Thank you.”

Watch her update, below.

Photo by ALICE CHICHE/AFP via Getty Images

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