Celine Dion‘s sister has shared an update regarding the singer’s health as she battles with stiff-person syndrome.

Last year, the Canadian icon revealed that she was diagnosed with the neurological illness called stiff person syndrome, an extremely rare autoimmune neurological condition that affects one person in a million. Unfortunately, this meant that Dion had postponed and later cancel her 2024 ‘Courage’ tour dates due to her “ongoing health issues.”

Claudette Dion, the “queen of power ballad”‘s sister, opened up about Celine’s condition in an interview with Hello! Canada. Claudette has hailed the singer as a “strong woman”, explaining that she is doing everything she can to get better.

Celine Dion performs live at Barclaycard Presents British Summer Time Hyde Park at Hyde Park on July 5, 2019 in London, England. Credit: Brian Rasic/GETTY
Celine Dion performs live at Barclaycard Presents British Summer Time Hyde Park at Hyde Park on July 5, 2019 in London, England. Credit: Brian Rasic/GETTY

“It’s an illness we know so little about,” she explained. “There are spasms – they’re impossible to control. You know who people often jump up in the night because of a cramp in the leg or the calf? It’s a bit like that but in all muscles. There’s little we can do to support her, to alleviate her pain,” she says of her sister’s symptoms. “She is doing everything to recover. She’s a strong woman.”

Claudette, who is also a singer, added that both family and friends are “crossing their fingers that researchers find a cure for this terrible disease.”

Back in December, Celine posted a video to her Instagram explaining how the illness was affecting her life.

“These spasms affect every aspect of my life, sometimes causing difficulties when I walk and not allowing me to use my vocal cords to sing the way I’m used to,” Dion tearfully explained.

“I have a great team of doctors working alongside me to help me get better, and my precious children who are supporting me and giving me hope. I’m working hard with my sports medicine therapist every day to build back my strength and my ability to perform again, but I have to admit it’s been a struggle.”

Celine Dion performs on the opening night of her new world tour
Celine Dion performs on the opening night of her new world tour “Courage” at the Videotron Centre in Quebec City, Quebec, on September 18, 2019. Credit: Alice Chiche/GETTY

She continued: “All I know is singing, it’s what I’ve done all my life and it’s what I love to do the most. I miss you so much, I miss seeing all of you, being on the stage, performing for you. I always give 100 per cent when I do my shows but my condition is not allowing me to give you that right now.”

Dion finished by saying: “This is my focus and I’m doing everything that I can to recuperate. I want to thank you so much for your encouraging wishes of love and support on my social media. This means a lot to me. Take care of yourselves, be well. I love you guys so much. And I really hope I can see you again real soon.”

Earlier this month, Shania Twain paid tribute to the singer amid her recent health issues, hoping that Dion will be “singing for us all again.”

While speaking to Billboard, Shania Twain shared a heartfelt message, wishing her friend and fellow singer well. “I hope to be able to connect with her at some point,” Twain told the publication. “I’m such a fan of Celine’s voice. She’s a one-of-a-kind, extraordinary vocalist and entertainer.”

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