Sufjan Stevens Battles Guillain-Barré Syndrome, Embarks on Road to Recovery


In a candid revelation on Wednesday, singer-songwriter Sufjan Stevens disclosed his ongoing struggle with Guillain-Barré syndrome, an uncommon neurological condition characterized by the body's immune system targeting nerve cells.

Stevens shared on his Tumblr page, "Last month I woke up one morning and couldn’t walk. My hands, arms and legs were numb and tingling and I had no strength, no feeling, no mobility." Following a battery of hospital tests, the diagnosis was confirmed.

During his hospitalization, the Oscar-nominated artist spent a fortnight in a specialized medical-surgical unit, undergoing a rigorous five-day treatment regimen and receiving immuno-hemoglobin infusions to safeguard vital organs from the spread of the disease.

He reflected, "Very scary, but it worked. My doctors did all the things to keep me alive and stabilize my condition. I owe them my life."

According to the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke (NINDS), severe instances of Guillain-Barré syndrome can lead to muscle weakness culminating in paralysis, potentially impacting breathing, blood pressure, or heart rate.

Stevens' path to recovery has begun, marked by intensive physical and occupational therapy, along with strength-building exercises aimed at regaining mobility. This process commenced with his admission to an acute rehabilitation center earlier this month.

"I’m only in my second week of rehab but it is going really well and I am working really hard to get back on my feet," he expressed, emphasizing his dedication to the journey of healing. "I’m committed to getting better, I’m in good spirits, and I’m surrounded by a really great team. I want to be well!"

Sufjan Stevens, recognized for his contributions to the indie music scene, garnered an Oscar nomination in 2018 for his original composition "Mystery of Love" featured in the film "Call Me By Your Name." Prior to his hospitalization, he was preparing for the release of his highly anticipated tenth studio album, "Javelin," scheduled for October 6.

In a closing note, Stevens extended a heartfelt tribute, saying, "Huge shout out to all the incredible caretakers of the world working night and day to help us heal. They are living saints."