Wendy Williams' team reveals she was diagnosed with aphasia and dementia

Celebrities Visit SiriusXM - September 6, 2018
Celebrities Visit SiriusXM - September 6, 2018 / Santiago Felipe/GettyImages

Former talk show host Wendy Williams has been out of the spotlight since the end of The Wendy Williams Show in 2021. While taking a step back from being on TV, the host has been mostly private, which has lead to a lot of speculation from her fans and followers about her health and well-being.

On February 22, her team announced that Wendy Williams was diagnosed in 2023 with primary progressive aphasia and frontotemporal dementia. Primary progressive aphasia is a nervous system issue that impacts a person's ability to verbally communicate and frontotemporal dementia (FTD) is the catchall term for a group of diseases of the frontal lobe of a person's brain, leading to atrophying of that area of the brain and leading to personality changes and loss of communication skills.

"Wendy would not have received confirmation of these diagnoses were it not for the diligence of her current care team, who she chose, and the extraordinary work of the specialists at Weill Cornell Medicine. Receiving a diagnosis has enabled Wendy to receive the medical care she requires"

The host's health issues became the focus of much of the discussion about her in 2017 following a fainting spell while filming her show. Prior to her team announcing this diagnosis, Wendy Williams had been open about struggling with lymphedema and Graves' disease, two health issues that ultimately lead to her stepping away from filming her show in 2022.

The press release sent out by her team said that the decision to share this health update was not an easy one, but assured her fans that she is receiving treatment and still able to function independently in many aspects of her life. The statement says: "Most importantly she maintains her trademark sense of humor and is receiving the care she requires to make sure she is protected and that her needs are addressed. She is appreciative of the many kind thoughts and good wishes being sent her way."

The announcement came just two days before the two-part documentary Where is Wendy Williams? is set to air on Lifetime, airing on February 24 and 25.

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