Indie singer-songwriter Sufjan Stevens has announced that he is learning to walk again after being diagnosed with Guillain-Barré syndrome, a rare autoimmune disease.
Stevens — whose first name is pronounced SOOF-yawn — announced the news in a Tumblr post.
The 48-year-old musician explained why he was unable to promote his new album “Javelin”, which is set to be released on October 6.
“Last month I woke up one morning and I couldn’t walk,” the “Chicago” singer wrote in a post.
“My hands, arms and legs were numb and tingling and I had no strength, no feeling, no mobility.”
“My brother took me to the emergency room and after a series of tests – MRI, EMG, cat scans, x-rays, spinal taps (!), echocardiograms, etc. – the neurologists diagnosed me with an autoimmune disease called Guillian- Barre syndrome,” he added.
Stevens explained that the disease can be treated by giving immuno-hemoglobin infusions for five days, provided the disease does not affect the brain, heart and lungs.
“Very scary, but it worked,” Stevens wrote. “I spent about two weeks in med/surgery, stuck in a bed, while my doctors did everything they could to keep me alive and stabilize my condition. I owe them my life. »
The singer-songwriter was transferred to an acute rehabilitation center on September 8, where he is learning to walk through intensive physical and occupational therapy.
“It’s a slow process, but they say I will ‘recover,’ it just takes a lot of time, patience and hard work,” Stevens wrote.
“Most people with GBS learn to walk again on their own within a year, so I’m hopeful. »
Stevens is best known for his song “Mystery of Love,” written for the 2017 film “Call Me by Your Name.”
Her albums “Illinois” and “Carrie & Lowell” both received critical acclaim.
“Mystery of Love” was nominated for an Oscar and a Grammy.