Actress Amy Schumer diagnosed with Cushing syndrome


Amy Schumer (left) was prompted to undergo a health check following the onslaught of online criticism regarding her appearance. Photo: Handout

American actress-comedian Amy Schumer always made it a point to call out Internet trolls who made fun of her puffy face on her socials.

However, the onslaught of online criticism regarding her appearance - after she recently appeared on American talk shows like The Tonight Show to promote the second season of her comedy-drama series Life & Beth (2022 to present) - prompted the 42-year-old to undergo a health check, where she was diagnosed with Cushing syndrome.

According to American medical centre Mayo Clinic, Cushing syndrome is a condition caused by having too much of the hormone cortisol in the body for a long time.

Symptoms include a rounded face, a fatty lump between the shoulders, and pink or purple stretch marks on the skin. It can also lead to high blood pressure, bone loss and type 2 diabetes.

On Feb 23, Schumer revealed her diagnosis to Jessica Yellin in the American journalist’s News Not Noise newsletter. Yellin said she reached out to Schumer after the performer received “cruel and misogynist comments” about her looks following her interview on The Tonight Show.

“While I was doing press on camera, I was also in MRI 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,” said the star of comedy films like Trainwreck (2015) and I Feel Pretty (2018), who shares son Gene, four, with husband Chris Fischer, an American chef.

Schumer added in her interview with Yellin: “So finding out I have the kind of Cushing that will just work itself out and I’m healthy was the greatest news imaginable.”

Schumer’s reveal came more than a week after sharing on her Instagram on Feb 16 that her appearance “is puffier than normal right now” as she was going through “some medical and hormonal things” because of endometriosis, an autoimmune disease in which tissue grows outside the uterus, which can cause pain and infertility.

The comedian, who told Yellin that “having the Internet chime in” on her appearance helped her realise something was wrong.

She added that she was open to sharing her medical condition because she “wants to advocate for women’s health”.

“The shaming and criticism of our ever-changing bodies is something I have dealt with and witnessed for a long time,” said Schumer.

“I want so much for women to love themselves and be relentless when fighting for their own health in a system that usually doesn’t believe them.”

She added that her diagnosis “is a good example of the fact that we never know what is going on with someone”.

“Everyone is struggling with something,” she said. “Maybe we can all be a little kinder to each other and ourselves.” – The Straits Times/Asia News Network

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