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Amy Schumer Says She Has Cushing’s Syndrome, a Hormonal Disorder


The comedian Amy Schumer has announced that she has been diagnosed with a rare hormonal disorder called Cushing’s syndrome, after she was swarmed with comments on social media about a change in her physical appearance.

Schumer, 42, revealed her diagnosis in an interview for the News Not Noise newsletter on Friday. People commented on her “puffier” face after she appeared this month on “The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon.” She said that the condition did not pose any serious threats to her health.

The online buzz around her appearance, a mix of concern and negativity, was how she “realized something was wrong,” Schumer told the newsletter.

Cushing’s syndrome is caused by excessive levels of cortisol, known as the stress hormone, and can cause a range of symptoms including a round face, weight gain and weak muscles, according to the National Institutes of Health.

“Over time, the excess cortisol causing these symptoms can lead to progressive deleterious health effects like high blood pressure, diabetes, bone loss,” said Dr. Lilah Morris-Wiseman, the chief of Johns Hopkins Medicine’s division of endocrine surgery.

In the newsletter interview, Schumer said she had been undergoing medical tests while also doing a round of interviews to promote the new season of her Hulu show, “Life and Beth.”

She told the newsletter that she was “in M.R.I. machines four hours at a time, having my veins shut down from the amount of blood drawn and thinking I may not be around to see my son grow up.”

“So finding out I have the kind of Cushing that will just work itself out and I’m healthy was the greatest news imaginable,” she added.

Cushing’s syndrome is sometimes the result of a tumor in the adrenal gland or elsewhere in the brain, requiring surgery.

But in Schumer’s case, the excess cortisol that led to her diagnosis was brought on by “getting steroid injections in high doses,” according to the newsletter.

The comic has been open about having endometriosis, a disease that affects the uterus and can be treated with steroids, though it was unclear if that was why Schumer was getting injections.

When steroids are the cause of Cushing’s syndrome, reducing their use can help reverse the symptoms of the disorder, Dr. Morris-Wiseman said.

Schumer highlighted the shaming that women face when their bodies change. Many comments on social media after her appearance on “The Tonight Show” were derisive and misogynistic.

After that appearance, Schumer wrote in an Instagram post that a woman “doesn’t need any excuse for her physical appearance and owes no explanation,” but that she wanted to “take the opportunity to advocate for self love and acceptance of the skin you’re in.”

She is the latest celebrity to disclose a medical diagnosis after facing public scrutiny over her health.

Last week, representatives for Wendy Williams, the former talk show host, announced that she had been diagnosed with “frontotemporal dementia and aphasia.”





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