Celine Dion’s Sister Says Singer Has Lost 'Control Over Her Muscles' As She Battles Rare Neurological Disease

Dec 21, 2023 by apost team

Céline Dion is a pinnacle name when it comes to the music industry. Her unique vocal tone and impressive singing abilities catapulted her into a lifetime of fame and success, with a career spanning four decades. 

Céline’s discography has shown the trials and tribulations of relationships, from the most beautiful love stories to the hardest moments of heartbreak. Facing some hardships herself, Céline has been able to immerse herself into her work and showcase genuineness through the lyrics and melodies. 

Being in the spotlight for such a long period of time is sure to be taxing on anyone, especially someone who is already facing such hardship. Fans grew concerned for the star years back when she started losing weight, her powerful voice being overtaken by her small frame.

The singer has been dealing with health complications for some time now and had to cancel her upcoming events following a heartbreaking announcement. Céline shared the news that she was diagnosed with a rare neurological disease called stiff-person syndrome

During the announcement of her illness, Céline said that her team of doctors was still learning about stiff-person syndrome, but they finally had some answers to her frequent spasms. She said that her condition had given her difficulties with walking and the use of her vocal cords.

Stiff-person syndrome occurs when there is a disruption in the pathways of communication from the brain to the muscles, which turn rigid or stiff. Aside from muscle stiffness and spasms, the symptoms of this condition include the risk of falling down or problems with breathing.

With Céline’s health condition, fans around the world have been sending love and support to her in these very trying times. Read on to find out how those closest to her have banded together to support her during this trying time.

Céline Dion (2017), (Todd Williamson/Getty Images Entertainment via Getty Images)

As Céline faces such serious health challenges, it is comforting to know that she is being supported by those closest to her, including her family. Celine’s sister, Claudette Dion, 74, revealed to Le Journal de Montreal that another one of their sisters, Linda Dion, was living with the singer in the home she shares with her sons. 

“When I call her and she's busy, I speak to my sister Linda who lives with her and tells me that she's working hard. She's listening to the top researchers in the field of this rare disease as much as possible,” Claudette told the outlet. 

She added while Céline’s health diagnosis was saddening, she had every confidence in her sister’s ability to make the best choices for herself and listen to what her body tells her.

“It's innate to her, she's disciplined in every area of her life… We can't find any medicine that works, but having hope is important… I honestly think that she mostly needs to rest. She always goes above and beyond, she always tries to be the best and top of her game. At one point, your heart and your body are trying to tell you something. It's important to listen to it,” Claudette added.

Claudette said she also told Céline that as difficult as her struggles appeared now, she still ought to look toward the future.

“I also said to her, 'I know you're an orphan, I know you're a widow, I know you're a single mom, but with everything you've given, you will receive in return,’” Claudette, who is also Céline’s godmother, said.


Céline Dion (2016), (Lester Cohen/BBMA2016/Getty Images for dcp/Getty Images Entertainment via Getty Images)

Claudette also opened up to Hello! Canada Magazine to give an update on her sister in September 2023. After describing Céline as “a strong woman” who was “doing everything to recover,” Claudette revealed dealing with her illness was made all the more difficult by it being so rare.

“It's an illness we know so little about. There are spasms – they're impossible to control. You know how people often jump up in the night because of a cramp in the leg or the calf? It's a bit like that, but in all muscles,” she said.

Claudette lamented there was “little we can do to support her, to alleviate her pain.” 

Despite the seemingly pessimistic outlook on the star’s health situation, Claudette said Céline’s loving family members were “crossing our fingers that researchers will find a remedy for this awful illness.” She also credited Céline’s fans with supporting the star through this challenging period and helping to lift her spirits.

“They love Céline, not only for the voice she has, but also for the human being she is. For the woman she has become, for the mother she has become. … We love her for the person she is,” Claudette remarked. 

The sentiment proved true as the update incited fans to express their sadness while also offering prayers and words of encouragement to the music icon.

“Praying for a recovery for Celine..I saw her yrs ago in Vegas what a beautiful show I cried..she is awesome !!!” one fan shared while another wrote, “Such a lovely woman beautiful voice so sad there (sic) little they can do I wish her well so much miss her very much Celine everyone misses you and long to see u once again really soon god bless.”

Céline Dion (2015), (Kevin Winter/Getty Images Entertainment via Getty Images)

On Dec. 12, 2023, Claudette spoke to 7 Jours Magazine and gave a rather harrowing update on the singer’s condition. 

“'She's working hard, but she doesn't have control over her muscles. What breaks my heart is that she's always been disciplined,” Claudette told the publication. “She's always worked hard. Our mother always told her, 'You're going to do it well, you're going to do it properly.”

Although there is a team of doctors aiding in her care, the progress of the research for Celine’s cure has since been slow. 

“The vocal cords are muscles, and the heart is also a muscle. This is what comes to get me. Because it's 1 out of a million case, the scientists haven't done that much research because it didn't affect that many people,” she added. 

The said update had fans worried about the singer’s worsening condition. 

“This is so cruel. Celine, may God bless you with a miracle and the strength to carry on,” another commented. 

“I can’t help but feel sorry for Celine and anyone else who is afflicted with this disease. It’s almost ironic that a woman with a one in a million voice should be a victim of a one in a million disease. Because of her fame, I hope that will inspire increased study of the disease and an eventual treatment or even a cure,” another pointed out. 

The surprising update came a month after Dion was spotted in Las Vegas for the first time in public since the announcement of her diagnosis.

She was seen watching Katy Perry’s Las Vegas Residency and looking active and well when she posed for pictures with fans at the National Hockey League match between the Montreal Canadiens in November 2023 at the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada.

Do you sympathize with Celine Dion’s health struggles? Does it make you feel better to know that her loved ones are supporting her as best they can? If so, let us know and pass this along to friends and family you would support through thick and thin, too.

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