Is Paula Abdul Sick? Yes, Abdul — who says she was hit by a drunk driver in 1987 and injured in an emergency plane landing in the early ’90s — says she is treated with anti-inflammatory medications and has massage and acupuncture treatments for her pain.
Abdul has been diagnosed with reflex sympathetic dystrophy (RSD), a chronic neurological disorder that causes severe pain. “I have four titanium plates in my neck. I’ve had 14 surgeries over the years. I had an operation the same evening as the first season finale of ‘American Idol,’ ” she says.
“It can come and go at any time, but I no longer have the intense nerve pain that is associated with RSD, thank God.”
Paula Abdul says she didn’t figure out her purpose in life until she became a judge on “American Idol.”
“I knew since I was a little girl that I had this profound way of touching people. My purpose is bringing out everybody’s best and being that cheerleader to other people’s success,” the 44-year-old singer-dancer tells OK! magazine in its latest issue.
“Being a judge on ‘American Idol’ overshadows being a Grammy Award winner and selling millions of records,” she says.
Paula Abdul Health Update: Living With Osteoarthritis
Abdul’s doctor told her she had osteoarthritis, a degenerative joint disease that can cause stiffness and pain. The common condition common affects more than 32.5 million adults in the United States, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
The diagnosis came as a relief to Abdul. “I kept thinking, at least it wasn’t something in my head,” she tells Topinfoguide. “There was a reason attached to what I was feeling.”
If anything, she adds, “I just wish I had known [about the condition] earlier.”
The Grammy-award winning performer, 58, has built a career on fast-paced choreography and impressive stunts, movements that have resulted in serious injuries, including a broken leg and back injury.
But about five years ago, Adbul noticed a new, strange pain in her joints during workouts and dress rehearsals.
“I knew something was wrong with my body,” the former American Idol judge tells Topinfoguide.