Wendy Williams was diagnosed with dementia and aphasia in 2023, according to a press release.

On Feb. 22, reps for the famous talk show host revealed the news shortly after a clip from the celeb’s forthcoming documentary Where Is Wendy Williams? captured the 59-year-old media maven looking frail.

On Thursday, Williams’ care team announced that the former radio host was diagnosed with primary progressive aphasia and frontotemporal dementia (FTD) in 2023. Aphasia, a neurogenic language disorder, can occur following a traumatic brain injury or dementia. The condition can disrupt the left hemisphere of the brain, which is responsible for language and communication abilities, the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association noted. The condition is most commonly seen in individuals post-stroke. Frontotemporal dementia is a form of brain disease that can drastically change the behavior, cognitive function, and personality of those affected. 

Reps for the Ask Wendy author claimed that her health struggles had presented “significant hurdles” in her life over the last year.

“Wendy would not have received confirmation of these diagnoses were it not for the diligence of her current care team, which she chose, and the extraordinary work of the specialists at Weill Cornell Medicine,” the statement continued. “Receiving a diagnosis has enabled Wendy to receive the medical care she requires.”

According to her care team, Williams wanted to raise awareness about aphasia and frontotemporal dementia to show support for people battling both health conditions. 

“There is hope that with early detection and far more empathy, the stigma associated with dementia will be eliminated, and those affected will receive the understanding, support, and care they deserve and need.”

At the end of the letter, reps gave an update on Williams’ well-being, telling fans that she could still do many things without the help of her medical team. Despite her health struggles, she’s still holding on to her “trademark sense of humor,” the statement added. “She is appreciative of the many kind thoughts and good wishes being sent her way.”

The announcement comes after a shocking clip from Williams’ documentary surfaced. 

On Feb. 24, Williams’ Lifetime documentary Where Is Wendy Williams? will debut. Ahead of the premiere, an exclusive clip from the series surfaced online Thursday, in which the former Hot 97 radio host could be seen talking with Angela White, formerly Blac Chyna. Donning no wig and minimal makeup, Williams looked weak and unrecognizable. Her speech also seemed impaired. Netizens were shocked to see the “Hot Topics” host in poor health.

Where Is Wendy Williams? delves into the raw and revealing moments of Williams’ life post the cancellation of her show in 2022 and the initiation of her court-appointed guardianship. From her struggles with alcohol abuse to her severe health challenges, the cameras capture every detail of her harrowing journey. 

Williams’ family says they lost contact with her following her court-ordered guardianship.

Since May 2022, Williams has been under legal guardianship that manages both her financial and health matters. Over the last ten months, she has been residing in an undisclosed facility to treat her cognitive issues.

According to Williams’ family, her court-appointed legal guardian, whose identity remains undisclosed, is the sole individual with unrestricted access to her. During an interview with People Thursday, Williams’ sister, Wanda Finnie, claimed that she and family members had been unable to contact the star since she entered her guardianship. However, Williams can contact them.

“How did she go from this aunt or sister that we love and is healthy one minute to this person who’s in and out of the hospital?” Finnie, 65, said. “How is that system better than the system the family could put in place? I don’t know. I do know that this system is broken. I hope that at some point, Wendy becomes strong enough where she can speak on her own behalf.”

Finnie alleged that court officials did not inform them why they appointed the unknown guardian over the media maven.

“All I know is that Wendy and her team walked into the courtroom one way, and they walked out, and the family is completely excluded,” Finnie added. “The people who love her cannot see her. I think the big is: How the hell did we get here?”

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