Selena Gomez may have been busy releasing a brand-new album and designing collections for U.S. brand Coach this year, but her public appearances have been minimal.
Now we know why.
The 25-year-old singer has revealed that she underwent a kidney transplant over the summer.
In an Instagram post, Selena opened up about the surgery, revealing that close friend Francia Raisa was the donor.
“I’m very aware some of my fans had noticed I was laying low for part of the summer and questioning why I wasn’t promoting my new music, which I was extremely proud of,” the star wrote.
“So I found out I needed to get a kidney transplant due to my lupus and was recovering. It was what I needed to do for my overall health.”
“There aren’t words to describe how I can possibly thank my beautiful friend Francia Raisa. She gave me the ultimate gift and sacrifice by donating her kidney to me. I am incredibly blessed. I love you so much sis.”
Selena has been absent from the public scene for the past few months. Although she has been photographed out and about by paparazzi, her first public appearance came at Harper’s Bazaar‘s New York Fashion Week party last weekend.
The chronic disease affects the body’s immune system and can cause symptoms such as extreme tiredness, joint pain, and swelling and rashes across the face, wrists, and hands.
More serious issues can also arise including lung and heart disease and inflammation of the kidneys.
In 2015, Selena said she had undergone chemotherapy to treat the condition, which currently affects 5 million people worldwide.
There is no cure for lupus. However, doctors can prescribe anti-inflammatory and steroid medication to fight it along with cancer-fighting drugs in rare cases.
“Lupus continues to be very misunderstood but progress is being made,” Selena finished in her heartwarming Instagram post.
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