Kéllé Bryan discusses her progression while living with lupus

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Kelle Bryan opened up on World Lupus Day last year about her “difficult journey” with the autoimmune condition which led to her experiencing a stroke. The singer and actress, 47, was diagnosed with the condition, which causes the body to attack its own healthy cells, in 1998.

She spoke about lupus on the show in a bid to raise awareness. She said: “It has been a really difficult journey. It’s not just me going through it.

“There are so many people out there struggling with lupus. For me, it’s about raising awareness of the disease and helping others to understand it more.

“There’s not very much tolerance or understanding for the disease.”

Speaking on an episode of Loose Women, broadcast on May 30, 2021, she explained how cerebral lupus led to a stroke.

Kelle said: “I had cerebral lupus…I lost the ability to speak, to read, to write and [my] movement and coordination.

“I’m diagnosed with lupus but the lupus was on my brain, which means I had cerebral lupus, I then had a stroke. I lost three days of my life where I don’t remember anything at all.”

The singer said she had to learn how to use a cup to drink again.

Kelle added: “Just little things we so take for granted…if you neglect [your brain] it’s going to let you down.”

On waking up after the stroke, she said: “It was an odd time…when I came around I was in hospital and I just remember someone fiddling with my head because they wanted to give me a brain scan. That’s the first memory I have.

“I remember my cousin Fiona and my mum and people being in the room and talking.

“I just remember the talking and opening my eyes and realising I was in hospital.

“They said I was awake for those three days but I don’t remember any of it.”

Kelle also described how the illness left her struggling with short-term memory loss. She said: “I would go out and leave my front door open or I would go shopping and leave my car door open.

“Those kinds of things, so really high risk.”

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What is lupus?

The NHS said: “Lupus is a long-term condition that causes joint pain, skin rashes and tiredness.

“There’s no cure, but symptoms can improve if treatment starts early.”

Lupus, also called systemic lupus erythematosus, is not always easy to diagnose because it can be similar to other conditions.

What are the main symptoms of lupus?

Symptoms of lupus include inflammation of different parts of the body including the lungs, heart, liver, joints and kidneys.

The NHS explained you should see a GP if you often experience joint and muscle pain, extreme tiredness that will not go away no matter how much you rest, and rashes which are often over the nose and cheeks.

Other symptoms can include headaches, mouth sores, high temperature, hair loss and sensitivity to light which can cause rashes on uncovered skin.

The severity can range from mild to severe, and certain symptoms should be seen immediately by a GP.

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