"American Idol" 2012 winner Phillip Phillips will soon undergo kidney surgery it was learned shortly after he was proclaimed the crooning champ on Fox Wednesday night.
The 21-year-old singer from Leesburg, Ga., reportedly battled severe and chronic kidney stones throughout the "American Idol" season. Phillips called into "Live! With Kelly" Thursday morning to talk about his win and his pending surgery.
The newly minted champ told Ripa he'd had only "about two and a half hours of sleep" Wednesday night as he explained that he wouldn't be able to make his scheduled appearance next week on "Live! With Kelly"
"I've been sick this whole show," Phillips told the Ripa. "I'm trying to get all my work done, to recover."
He said a great set of doctors had tended to him throughout the "AI" experience, and told Ripa, "I'll be having [surgery] here soon. I'm getting prepared for all that. I'm ready to feel better, feel like myself."
Phillips has never made his specific condition public, but several media outlets reported his battle with chronic kidney stones, which, although common, counts among the most painful urologic disorders.
Kidney stones account for nearly 3 million visits to doctors and more than half a million visits to the emergency rooms each year, according to the National Institutes of Health. Kidney stones, which are hard masses that develop from crystals that separate from dietary minerals in urine, are typically passed through the body in the urine stream.
According to gosspi site TMZ, multiple sources said that the crooner had returned to Georgia two weeks ago to see his family doctor, who said the singer needed immediate surgery.
TMZ also reported that Phillips' kidney problems became so severe midseason that physicians put in a stent to temporarily fix the difficulty. Ureteric stents are thin tubes inserted into the ureter to prevent obstruction of urine flow from the kidneys.
This condition can be "very painful," said Dr. Lewis Teperman, director of transplantation at NYU Langone Medical Center.
"What type of procedure [he gets] depends on the size of the stones and where they are," said Teperman. "Most individuals live a long and happy life with stones with the occasional bout of pain from passage."