Stiff-person syndrome feels like someone is strangling you

Celine Dion is opening up about the impact tough guy syndrome has had on her voice.

The five-time Grammy winner, 56, opened up about her condition to NBC News’ Hoda Kotb in what will be her first televised interview about her health since revealing her diagnosis in 2022.

“Its Like someone is strangling youHe said, “It feels like someone is pressing on your larynx/pharynx.” Previewing the conversation that aired Today On the show on Friday, June 7, he demonstrated the effect by raising his voice. “It was like talking like this, and you couldn’t go up or down.”

“It starts to spasm,” the witch continued. “It starts to [in the throat], [And I thought]‘No, it’s okay, everything will be fine.’ But it can be in the stomach, it can be in the spine, it can be in the ribs.”

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He added that sometimes the stiffness feels like it’s stuck in some place.

“It seems like if I turn my feet forward they stay in [that position]the “Power of Love” singer said.
Or, if I cook — because I love to cook — my fingers, my hands, lock into position. … It’s a cramp, but it’s a position where you can’t open them.”

“I once had broken ribs, because sometimes when the injury is very severe, they break,” he said.

Celine Dion performs during ‘Sinatra 100: An All-Star Grammy Concert’ at the Encore Theater at Wynn Las Vegas on December 2, 2015.
Ethan Miller/Getty Images

In December 2022, Dion revealed that she had been diagnosed with a rare and incurable neurological disease called stiff-person syndrome, which can cause muscle spasms, and that she had to cancel all of her upcoming performances because of it.

As the vocal powerhouse said at the time, “Unfortunately, these spasms affect every aspect of my daily life…sometimes they make it difficult for me to walk and I can’t use my vocal cords the way I used to when singing.”

“All I know is singing,” she said. “That’s what I’ve done all my life. And that’s what I love doing most.”

Samir Hussein/Redferns

According to the Court, the position is that Stiff Person Syndrome FoundationAffects the central nervous system, especially the brain and spinal cord.

“Patients may become disabled, wheelchair-dependent or bedridden, unable to work and care for themselves,” he says, adding that neurological diseases with autoimmune features can include symptoms such as “extreme stiffness, debilitating pain, chronic anxiety,” and muscle spasms “can be so intense that they can dislocate joints and even break bones.”

Speaking about her interview with Dion to co-host Jenna Bush Hager last month, Kotb, 59, said, “[Céline] She’s much better now, but there was a time when she nearly died, she says.”

“It was a scary time, and she’s dealing with it,” Kotb said.

Dion’s full conversation with Kotb will air on Tuesday, June 11 at 10 p.m. ET on NBC. Today It airs weekdays on the network at 7 a.m. Eastern Time.


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