Celine Dion and her loved ones have offered health updates amid her battle with stiff-person syndrome.
Dion revealed in December 2022 that she had to postpone several performances due to the health scare.
“Hello, everyone. I’m sorry it’s taken me so long to reach out to you. I miss you all so much and I can’t wait to be on stage talking to you in person. As you know, I’ve always been an open book and I wasn’t ready to say anything before, but I’m ready now," an emotional Dion said in an Instagram video at the time. “I’ve been dealing with problems with my health for a long time and it’s been really difficult for me to face these challenges and to talk about everything that I’ve been going through.”
According to the Mayo Clinic, stiff-person syndrome is a rare disorder of motor function characterized by involuntary stiffness of axial muscles and superimposed painful muscle spasms, which are often induced by startle or emotional stimuli.
Scroll down for everything Dion and her family have shared about her health battle:
Breaking Down the Diagnosis
In December 2022, Dion said she had “no choice but to concentrate" on her health ahead of her career.
"I have hope that I’m on the road to recovery. This is my focus and I’m doing everything that I can to recuperate," she said via Instagram. “Take care of yourselves. Be well. I love you guys so much and I really hope I can see you again real soon.”
Focusing on Her Recovery
“I have a great team of doctors working alongside me to help me get better and my precious children, who are supporting me and giving me hope,” Dion noted in her December 2022 Instagram video. “I’m working hard with my sports medicine therapist every day to build back my strength and my ability to perform again, but I have to admit it’s been a struggle.”
While a source later told Us Weekly that the diagnosis came as a “shock” to Dion, they noted she had not lost “her fighting spirit and is comforted that at least she knows exactly what she’s dealing with now and there’s comfort that she can alleviate some of the symptoms by getting treatments that are specific for this condition.”
Having Her Loved Ones by Her Side
“Her kids have been her rock … the twins are very mature for their age and René-Charles checks in and dotes on his mom all the time,” the insider went on to share. “Celine received this diagnosis fairly recently; she’s been suffering the symptoms for quite some time, but it always baffled her what was wrong." (Dion shared son René-Charles and twins Nelson and Eddy with late husband René Angélil, who died of throat cancer at age 73 in January 2016.)
Her sister Claudette also opened up about how the family has been helping the performer. "When I call her and she's busy, I speak to my sister Linda who lives with her and tells me that she's working hard. She's listening to the top researchers in the field of this rare disease as much as possible," she told Le Journal de Montreal in 2023. "We trust her. It's innate to her, she's disciplined in every area of her life … We can't find any medicine that works, but having hope is important."
Claudette continued: "I honestly think that she mostly needs to rest. She always goes above and beyond, she always tries to be the best and top of her game. At one point, your heart and your body are trying to tell you something. It's important to listen to it."
In an August 2023 interview with Hello! Canada magazine, Claudette called Dion a “strong woman” and noted that “she’s doing everything to recover.” She told the outlet that while there is little she and the rest of Dion’s family “can do to support her, to alleviate her pain,” they are “crossing our fingers that researches will find a remedy for this awful illness.”