Canadian pop singer Justin Bieber disclosed on Friday that he was diagnosed with a virus that left half of his face paralyzed and forced him to cancel some upcoming performances to focus on recovery.
In a video posted on Instagram, Bieber said he had contracted Ramsay Hunt syndrome, which affected nerves in his ear and face.
He noted that his right eye was not blinking, adding “I can’t smile on this side of my face. This nostril will not move. So, there’s full paralysis on this side of my face.”
Bieber added that he has been doing facial exercises to “get back to normal,” but that he does not know how long it will take to recover.
He had been due to play in Washington DC and Toronto earlier this week, with concerts also planned in New York and Los Angeles in the coming weeks, BBC reported.
The Mayo Clinic, cited by the BBC, said that for most people, the symptoms of Ramsay Hunt syndrome were temporary, but can become permanent.
“The inability for patients to close one eyelid can also cause eye pain and blurred vision,” the organization said according to the BBC report, adding that it is most common in people over 60 years old.
Derick Wade, a consultant in neurological rehabilitation and visiting professor at Oxford Brookes University in the UK told The Associated Press that recovery time can vary significantly.
“If a nerve is damaged in this way, it can recover in some people very quickly, in a few days or a few weeks and in other people can take several months. So it’s a very unpredictable affair,” he said.
With Reuters and The Associated Press