Wendy Williams breaks her silence on dementia diagnosis

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Wendy Williams has released her first statement since the public learned of her disturbing medical diagnosis.

Earlier this week, we learned that the veteran talk show host has been diagnosed with dementia as well as aphasia.

Previously, while she was still front and center on her aforementioned talk show, Williams openly discussed how she had been battling Graves’ disease for years.

This latest news comes after the reality show revealed the tragic depths Williams has fallen into due to her health concerns.

Wendy Williams Walk of Fame
Wendy Williams attends being honored with a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame on October 17, 2019 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by David Livingston/Getty Images)

Williams said on Friday, February 23:

“I want to say that I am so grateful for all the love and kind words I have received after sharing my diagnosis of aphasia and frontotemporal dementia (FTD).

“Let me say, wow! Your response has been tremendous.

“The messages shared with me have touched me, reminding me of the power of unity and the need for compassion.”

Wendy Williams breaks into tears during a SiriusXM radio interview in 2019.Wendy Williams breaks into tears during a SiriusXM radio interview in 2019.
Wendy Williams participates in SiriusXM Town Hall with Wendy Williams hosted by SiriusXM host Karen Hunter at the SiriusXM studios on July 23, 2019. (Photo credit: Astrid Stovierz/Getty Images for SiriusXM)

In her statement, the Wendy Williams Show host advocated for those whose stories and experiences with this same diagnosis have been ignored.

She concluded, “I would also like to thank the Association for Frontotemporal Degeneration for their words of support and their extraordinary efforts to raise awareness of FTD.”

“I continue to need personal space and peace to move forward. Please just know that your positivity and encouragement is greatly appreciated.

Fans have shown tremendous concern for Williams over the past few months, weeks and days.

There is speculation that he suffered a stroke, but this has not yet been confirmed.

Wendy Williams attends a premiere in 2019.Wendy Williams attends a premiere in 2019.
Wendy Williams attends the world premiere of Apple TV+’s “The Morning Show” at David Geffen Hall on October 28, 2019. (Photo credit: Theo Wargo/Getty Images)

Williams’ team announced her dementia diagnosis on Thursday, February 22.

In a press release, the star’s representatives said she received her diagnosis last year and that the conditions “have already presented significant obstacles to Wendy’s life.”

“Wendy is still capable of doing a lot for herself,” read part of the statement.

“The most important thing is that she maintains her trademark sense of humor and that she is getting the care she needs to ensure she is safe and her needs are being met.

“She appreciates the many kind thoughts and well wishes being sent her way.”

Wendy Williams in a gold jacket on the red carpetWendy Williams in a gold jacket on the red carpet
Wendy in happier times, working the red carpet (Photo by Dia Dipasupil/Getty Images for Vulture Festival)

According to the Mayo Clinic, aphasia “takes away your ability to communicate” and “can affect your ability to speak, write, and understand language, both oral and written.”

This medical organization says this condition “usually arises suddenly after a stroke or head injury.” But it can also be caused by a slowly growing brain tumor or a disease that causes progressive, permanent damage (degenerative).

Williams entered a facility for treatment for cognitive issues in April 2023 and has been appointed a court-appointed legal guardian.

“Over the years, questions have been raised several times about Wendy’s ability to process information and many people have speculated about Wendy’s condition, especially after she began to lose words, sometimes acts incorrectly, and has difficulty understanding financial transactions,” continued. Press release from people close to Williams.

“Receiving a diagnosis has enabled Wendy to receive the medical care she needs.”

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