Selma Blair Helped Christina Applegate Discover MS by Noticing One Symptom

11 months ago

Selma Blair’s battle with MS had gone undiagnosed for 4 decades. Since then, she has had an incredible impact on the multiple sclerosis community and on how the world views it. Thanks to her experience, she was able to prevent her friend and former co-star Christina Applegate from facing a similar fate.

Selma almost gave up on herself, then she was finally diagnosed.

Invision/Invision/East News

During her childhood, Selma Blair would often wake up in the middle of the night with uncontrollable laughter. However, as she grew older, her experience shifted to waves of sudden and inexplicable crying. Believing herself to be emotionally charged, Blair had no idea that the undiagnosed multiple sclerosis had damaged her frontal lobe, which was equivalent to a brain injury. Despite her normal-looking appearance, Blair had been living with a disability for her entire life without realizing it.

IMAGO/Faye Sadou/Imago Stock and People/East News

After filming Kath & Kim in 2009, Blair’s autoimmune system started attacking itself, and she lost most of her hair and energy, prompting her to leave the industry altogether. Blair struggled with self-hatred and found it difficult to manage even simple tasks, let alone pursue work. She spent her days in bed, crying, reading, sleeping, and seeking medical help, constantly fearing that any diagnosis would render her incapable or mentally unsound. “I gave up almost until the diagnosis,” she revealed.

Now, she’s making a difference in the MS community.

“I didn’t imagine I could ever make a difference by showing up as myself and being open about my experiences,” Blair explained, opening up. She acknowledges the importance of her visibility as a disabled woman, recognizing that her public presence holds great value. Seeing other individuals with mobility aids rally around her on the red carpet while she was in the midst of an MS flare empowered her to do so. Blair now makes a conscious decision to be open and share her story with others.

Christina Applegate discovered she was suffering from MS because Blair urged her to get tested.

VALERIE MACON/AFP/East News

“I was sitting in Selma’s living room, our children playing, and I told Selma I’d been having this weird tingling in my feet,” Applegate revealed. Blair then said that she must get tested for MS. At the time, even Applegate’s doctor doubted it, but the results came back positive. Dead To Me star, Christina Applegate, was diagnosed with MS in 2021.

She’s beyond grateful to her friend and former co-star, Blair, for urging her to get tested. “Because of her, I’m going to have a better quality of life,” shared Applegate.

Applegate has opened up about the signs of the illness and the difficulties of living with it.

VALERIE MACON/AFP/East News

Symptoms that had arisen years before Applegate’s diagnosis included numbness and a tingling sensation in her limbs. “I wish I had paid attention,” she explained during an interview. “But who was I to know?”

Applegate also recalls feeling off-balance while filming Dead To Me and struggling during a tennis match before receiving an official diagnosis. She received some medications to get better, but, as Applegate said, there is no better, so she needed time to process the “loss of my life, my loss of that part of me.”

Preview photo credit Invision/Invision/East News, VALERIE MACON/AFP/East News

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