Celine Dion relied on heavy doses of Valium to get through shows and fight rare condition

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Celine Dion's hopeless desire to execute while fighting a uncommon neurological upset erstwhile pushed her to regularly return up to 90 milligrams of Valium a day, she said — doses that could've been deadly.

The famed Canadian songstress has been sidelined pinch stiff-person syndrome (SPS), a debilitating condition that impacts roughly one aliases 2 retired of each cardinal people.

To power symptoms, the five-time Grammy winner said she started pinch 20-milligram doses of nan powerful medicine that tin curb muscle spasms and seizures. Adult doses typically scope from 2 to 10 milligrams.

But arsenic her assemblage became accustomed to that dosing, Dion said she'd extremity up having to summation it — up nan 90 milligrams connected immoderate days.

"Ninety milligrams of Valium tin termination you. You tin extremity breathing," Dion told NBC News' Hoda Kotb. "And astatine 1 point, nan point is that my assemblage sewage utilized to it astatine 20 and 30 and 40 [milligrams], until it went up. And I needed that. It was relaxing my full body."

Dion said she yet trim backmost connected nan meds erstwhile nan Covid-19 pandemic struck successful outpouring 2020, since location were nary much capacity while overmuch of nan world system went into hibernation.

"I stopped everything pinch nan thief of doctors because erstwhile you taper these narcotics you can, you tin dice arsenic well," Dion said. "You cannot conscionable for illustration extremity everything."

But erstwhile she sewage disconnected meds, nan symptoms worsened.

Dion shocked her fans successful precocious 2022 erstwhile she disclosed she was suffering from nan uncommon information that's stymied comeback efforts.

Dion has pledged to execute again contempt her ongoing struggles pinch SPS, which tin bring terrible symptoms astatine a moment's notice.

"The episodic musculus spams are often triggered by various things, including stress. That tin beryllium bully aliases bad affectional stress," said Dr. Amanda Piquet, a Colorado neurologist who has been treating Dion. "So it tin beryllium doing thing you love, specified arsenic signing. And we tin spot those musculus spams travel out."

Oscar-nominated head Irene Taylor included a jarring segment successful her upcoming "I Am: Celine Dion" when nan singer's ft cramp quickly shape-shifted into a scary shutdown erstwhile she couldn't speak aliases move.

Taylor called it nan astir "extraordinarily uncomfortable infinitesimal successful my life."

"Her assemblage was was enduring thing that was unimaginable," Taylor said.

The regular threat of specified a shutdown has led to blunt talks pinch Dion's children, who cognize not to panic if mom abruptly isn't moving.

"'Don't beryllium frightened if I can't talk. Mom's not dying. Mom cannot usage her vocal cords. If I [do] not respond to you, it's imaginable that I perceive you, but I cannot communicate,'" Dion said she'd told her 13-year-old twins, Nelson and Eddy. "They cognize what to do: telephone 911."

David K. Li

David K. Li is simply a elder breaking news newsman for NBC News Digital.


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