The comedian Richard Lewis is the most recent famous person to disclose that he has Parkinson’s disease, a condition that affects the central nervous system.
Lewis, 75, revealed in a video posted to Twitter on Sunday that he has experienced a number of health issues during the previous three and a half years. He sought assistance when he realized he had “started walking a little stiffly” and was “shuffling” his feet.
— Richard Lewis (@TheRichardLewis) April 24, 2023
“I went to a neurologist and they gave me a brain scan and I was diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease, and that was about two years ago,” Lewis wrote in the post. “But luckily I got it late in life and they say you progress very slowly if at all and I’m on the right meds so I’m cool.”
Lewis also mentioned in the video that he has been having “sort of a rocky time” due to four consecutive back, shoulder, and hip operations.
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The comedian, well known for “Curb Your Enthusiasm,” claimed to have quit stand-up comedy and is now concentrating on writing and acting.
“I have Parkinson’s disease but I’m under a doctor’s care and everything is cool,” Lewis said. “I just wanted to let you know that’s where it’s been at.”
After Alzheimer’s disease, Parkinson’s disease is the most prevalent neurodegenerative condition. It progresses and is chronic. Men are more likely to be diagnosed than women, and the average diagnosis age is 60 or older.
According to the American National Institutes of Health, around 500,000 Americans have been given a Parkinson’s diagnosis, while the true figure is most likely much higher.
Experts say that genetics, including certain mutations, and environmental factors are some of the reasons why some people get the ailment.
Some people only experience minor symptoms, but motor symptoms might be very bad for others. Tremors, stiffness, loss of balance, changes in speech, and slower mobility are only a few symptoms.
With the help of medication and lifestyle modifications, notably aerobic exercise, patients may be able to reduce their symptoms. Some might require surgery. Physical therapy may benefit balance issues, while speech-language pathology may aid communication issues.
Lewis joins other well-known performers, including as musician Neil Diamond, 82, and actor Michael J. Fox, 29, who have spoken about their Parkinson’s battles. In January 2018, Diamond made his illness public for the first time.
“I was in denial for the first year or two. When the doctor told me what it was, I was just not ready to accept it,” Diamond told CBS News. “I said, ‘Oh, OK. I’ll see you, you know, whenever you wanna see me. But I have work to do, so I’ll see you later.’ “
But, Diamond added: “This is the hand that God’s given me, and I have to make the best of it, and so I am.”
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