Lady Gaga is tired of people thinking the chronic pain she experiences isn’t real.
In the October issue of Vogue, the 32-year-old pop star opened up about her struggle with fibromyalgia, a condition that affects the nervous system and causes pain throughout the body.
“I get so irritated with people who don’t believe fibromyalgia is real,” the singer said. “For me, and I think for many others, it’s really a cyclone of anxiety, depression, PTSD, trauma, and panic disorder, all of which sends the nervous system into overdrive, and then you have nerve pain as a result.”
“People need to be more compassionate. Chronic pain is no joke. And it’s every day waking up not knowing how you’re going to feel.”
Gaga, born Stefani Germanotta, revealed she suffers from the debilitating condition last September, just before the release of her documentary Gaga: Five Foot Two.
There’s a lot of misunderstanding around fibromyalgia, because up until recently, the condition wasn’t widely accepted as a real illness, said Dr. Mary-Ann Fitzcharles, an associate professor of medicine in the Division of Rheumatology at McGill University.
Many believed that symptoms of fibromyalgia were all “in the head” of people dealing with the illness, since they often look healthy otherwise.
“It is now a completely recognized condition, no question,” Fitzcharles said. “We’ve moved away from the notion that all patients have mental illness.”