Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Natalie Cole Reveals Liver Disease

Singer Natalie Cole has been diagnosed with Hepatitis C, she revealed.

Cole, 58, the daughter of crooner Nat King Cole, is thought to have contracted the potentially deadly virus from past drug use.

The disease was discovered during a routine examination, the US star's spokesman said.

Cole was addicted to LSD, cocaine and heroin before becoming clean of drugs in 1984 following a long stay in rehab.

Her doctors said she is suffering from fatigue, muscle aches and dehydration - side effects from the treatment for Hepatitis C.

The Grammy Award-winning singer said: "I've been so fortunate to have learned so much from my past experiences. I am embraced by the love and support of my family and friends.

"I am committed to my belief in myself and in my abiding faith to meet this challenge with a heartfelt optimism and determination."

The star, whose father died of lung cancer when she was 15, said: "This is how I intend to deal with this current challenge in my life."

Dr Graham Woolf, associate clinical professor of medicine at UCLA/Cedars-Sinai Medical Centre in the US, said: "Natalie has had a terrific response to her medication and is now virus negative.

"This gives her an increased chance of cure. But, she has also suffered significant side effects from the anti-viral medicine".

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