10 Celebrities with Chronic Illnesses

They may be beautiful, rich and famous, but celebrities are human too, and they're prone to getting sick like the rest of us.

Some even live with chronic conditions.

Take a look at 10 celebrities with chronic illnesses and how they live with them.

10 Michael J. Fox: Parkinson's Disease

Mega TV and film star Michael J. Fox, known for starring in iconic movies such as “Back to the Future,” was diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease at 30 years old in 1991.

Fox waited seven years before going public with his diagnosis. Although he admits to having bad days, he no longer looks at living with Parkinson’s as a battle or a fight, he recently told Parade Magazine.

Parkinson’s disease is a neurological disorder that affects a person’s ability to walk and move.

Symptoms include shaking, problems with balance, difficulty swallowing, difficulty making facial expressions (a mask-like face) and muscle aches and pains.

The condition often develops after the age of 50.

About 50,000 to 60,000 new cases of Parkinson’s are diagnosed each year in the U.S., according to the National Parkinson’s Foundation.

9 Elisabeth Hasselbeck: Celiac disease

Elisabeth Hasselbeck, co-host of ABC's “The View,” has had a decade-long struggle with celiac disease.

Celiac disease is a condition that damages the lining of the small intestine, preventing the body from properly absorbing food. The damage is due to a body’s reaction to gluten, which is found in wheat, barley and rye.

More than 2 million people in the United States have the disease, according to the National Institutes of Health.

The talk show host tolerated the painful digestive condition for years, reported the New York Daily News in 2009.

“No matter what I ate, I would soon be doubled over with cramps, awful indigestion, diarrhea – or all of the above simultaneously,” Hasselbeck told the Daily News.

Hasselbeck realized she had celiac disease after her symptoms disappeared when she was enduring a severely restricted diet while filming “Survivor: The Australian Outback” in 2001.

She now follows a gluten-free diet, currently the only treatment for the disease.

8 Halle Berry: Diabetes

Oscar winning actress Halle Berry was diagnosed with diabetes in 1989. Berry was 22 years old when she became ill while working on the TV show “Living Dolls,” she told the Daily Mail in 2005.

In 2007, Berry reportedly claimed to have weaned herself off insulin, saying she longer had Type 1 diabetes, and instead had Type 2.

But experts disagreed, saying the actress was probably misinformed or misdiagnosed, and likely had Type 2 diabetes all along.

“When someone really has Type 1, it means their immune system has destroyed the insulin producing part of pancreas,” said Dr. Francine Kaufman, a diabetes expert at Childrens Hospital Los Angeles told ABC news. “In that case, there is no way to wean yourself off insulin [treatments].”

Berry, now 45, manages her Type 2 diabetes with regular exercise and a healthy diet.

7 Nick Cannon: Lupus

The host of “America’s Got Talent” and Mariah Carey’s main squeeze, Nick Cannon recently revealed he had a form of lupus that affects his kidneys, reported the Washington Post.

The 31-year-old actor was diagnosed with lupus after suffering from kidney failure, the Post said.

Lupus is a chronic, autoimmune disease that can damage any part of the body — skin, joints or organs.

More than 16,000 new cases of lupus are reported annually across the country, according to the Lupus Foundation of America.

Signs and symptoms of the disease often last for many years.

Doctors use a variety of medicines such as corticosteroids, monoclonal antibodies and aspirin, to treat lupus and keep the symptoms under control.

6 Kim Kardashian: Psoriasis

After finding red, flaky patches of skin on her legs in 2011, the “Keeping up with the Kardashians” star was diagnosed with psoriasis on an episode of her TV reality show.

Psoriasis is an autoimmune disease, meaning the condition results from the immune system attacking the body's own cells, rather than foreign invaders. The skin disorder appears as raised red patches with thick silvery scales.

About 7.5 million Americans have psoriasis, according to the National Psoriasis Foundation.

The disorder, which can range from a mild skin rash to a debilitating condition, can flare up for a few weeks or months, but also subsides for periods of time.

Experts believe high stress, certain medications and drinking alcohol or smoking can trigger an outbreak, but the condition is treatable.

5 Bret Michaels: Heart Disease

In 2010, Bret Michaels, a reality TV star and former lead singer of the band Poison, suffered a mini-stroke caused by a hole in his heart, according to CNN.

To repair the damage, doctors inserted a catheter into a vein in Michaels' groin, and guided a device up into his heart, where it will stay permanently to stop abnormal blood flow between the two chambers of the heart.

Without treatment, Michaels could have been at risk for developing blood clots and having an additional stroke, reported CNN.

About 795,000 Americans each year suffer from a stroke, according to the American Stroke Association.

Transient ischemic stroke, also called a mini-stroke, is caused by a blood clot. The difference between a stroke and mini-stroke is that a mini-stroke’s blockage is temporary, and there is no permanent damage to the brain.

4 Marcia Cross: Migraines

Since she was 14 years old, “Desperate Housewives” star Marcia Cross has suffered from severe migraines, reported People Magazine in 2005.

For years, the actress has lived with painful headaches, along with visual aura, which is the feeling or symptoms that a migraine is about to begin.

“My fingers tingle, and I see a very odd sort of aura in my peripheral vision,” she told MSNBC in 2006.

Cross is one of nearly 30 million Americans who suffer from migraines, according to the National Headache Foundation. Women are three times more likely to suffer from the condition than men.

Cross takes medication to manage her symptoms.

“I know when it’s coming on, and I take my medication, and in a number of hours I’m back on my feet again,” reported MSNBC.

3 Montel Williams: Multiple Sclerosis

In 1999, daytime talk show host Montel Williams went public with his diagnosis of multiple sclerosis, a debilitating disease that affects the brain and spinal cord.

“My primary symptom is pain,” Williams told Oprah Winfrey on her talk show in 2009. “I've got pain from my shins to my feet, 24 hours a day, 365 days a year, and it's been there for the last 10 years.”

About 400,000 Americans have multiple sclerosis, according to the National MS Society.

As with other autoimmune disorders, multiple sclerosis occurs when the immune system mistakenly attacks the person's healthy tissue.

Williams lives with the disease by paying close attention to three things: his diet, exercise and medication, he said on “Oprah.”

2 Hugo Weaving: Epilepsy

Actor Hugo Weaving, known for starring in blockbuster movies such as “The Matrix” and “Lord of the Rings,” was diagnosed with epilepsy when he was 13 years old.

Since his diagnosis, he has been on medication, according to a 2003 article in the Sydney Morning Herald.

Epilepsy is a condition that produces seizures affecting a person’s mental and physical functions.

Seizures can last from a few seconds to a few minutes, with symptoms ranging from convulsions to loss of consciousness.

Epilepsy affects an estimated three million Americans and 50 million people worldwide, according to the National Epilepsy Foundation.

1 Jillian Michaels: polycystic ovary syndrome and endometriosis

Fitness guru Jillian Michaels suffers from polycystic ovary syndrome and endometriosis.

Polycystic ovary syndrome, when a woman's female sex hormones are out of balance, can cause changes to the menstrual cycle and the skin, along with small cysts in the ovaries and trouble getting pregnant.

Endometriosis occurs when cells from the lining of the uterus become displaced and grow in other areas of the abdomen or body, leading to pain, irregular bleeding, and problems getting pregnant.

Michaels, a former trainer on the TV show “The Biggest Loser” announced both conditions after being criticized for stating in an interview that she would rather adopt than put her body through the physical challenges of pregnancy.

“The reality is that I have endometriosis, and I most likely couldn’t get pregnant,” she told the New York Times in 2011.

Michaels manages her symptoms by eating organic foods and exercising regularly, reports Prevention.

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