Thursday, 9 July 2009

Auto Immune Diseases and Michael Jackson

I consider a 14ct gold-lined coffin to be an obscenity.

However, if I may say a word or two about the late Michael Jackson's medical condition.

You can research for yourself - it's not well-publicised and little-known, but in several interviews by Mr Jackson and some of his medical team, it was openly admitted that he had two auto-immune diseases, both 4 times more common in African-Americans than Whites.

The first is Vitiligo. This is a condition where the body's immune system attacks the melanin-producing cells in the skin. In mild conditions, the patient ends up with albino-white spots and blotches. In the usual case, the patient ends up looking piebald, like an apaloosa horse, or if African-American, a Jersey cow. In severe cases though, the patient ends up looking like a Dalmation: ghostly white, with some irregular dark spots.

The best cosmetic result in such a case is to try to even out the irregularity with cosmetics, slightly darkening the ghostly palor, and bleaching the dark areas so they don't stand out too much.

A patient with mild vitiligo might look like this:


A patient with moderate to severe vitiligo - with and without makeup - might look like this:


A patient with severe vitiligo, with some of the makeup having worn off during the workday, might look like this:


Sufferers from severe vitiligo get severe sunburn even from reflected sunlight, as do albinos. They wear concealing clothing, gloves, wide-brimmed hats, and dark glasses. They may also have to wear surgical masks, and if visiting the middle east, the most practical clothing resembles a woman's burqa, with 100% coverage.



Sound familiar?

Another auto-immune disease, often associated with vitiligo, is lupus. This devastating condition happens when the body's auto-immune response attacks its own connective tissues, such as nasal and joint cartilage. This is episodic, and can leave the sufferer in agony, with severe joint inflammation so bad they have to be wheeled around in a wheelchair. Chronic cutaneous lupus also attacks the skin, causing lesions which need numerous episodes of plastic surgery to avoid severe disfigurement.



Again, sound familiar?

A typical patient with vitiligo during a lupus flare-up might look something like this:



Since 1986, Mr Jackson had lived a life of increasing pain: unable to tolerate direct or even indirect sunlight, and subject to crippling bouts of agony that required strong painkillers to relieve. Such a situation would prematurely age anyone, making them look more like 70 than 50.

One more thing about lupus - it causes damage to the veins and arteries, causing low density cholesterol plaque to stick and block them. It is very common for lupus sufferers to have asymptomatic heart disease, and suffer sudden cardiac arrest without warning in their 40's and 50's.

Again, all these facts are no secret, just not publicised. It didn't fit the image.

10 comments:

RadarGrrl said...

Somebody PLEASE tell this to J. Michael Bailey, who, once again, seems to want to put everything down to some sort of sexual fetish!

MgS said...

Radargrrl:

When all you have is a hammer, all the world looks like a nail.

I wonder if that's where Bailey is...

Grits said...

He lived such a sad, painful life, and it's pretty heartbreaking that the media was so willing to call him a freak, a pedophile, and a race traitor (strangely - or predictably? - I only ever saw this one coming from white people very impressed with their own cleverness), while making him the butt of every joke, for suffering multiple illnesses. The mention of his vitiligo, when it WAS publicized, was more often than not treated as this wacky made-up excuse for his crazy person excesses - and then even with his 'crazy person' status, his legitimate mental illness would be treated as a wacky made-up excuse for his undeniable pedophilia. Freaking tragic. Anyway, thanks for laying it all out so clearly and incisively; I'm probably going to pass this post around because I think it's a great one.

Anonymous said...

No it was idiots like Martin Bashiir with his stupid documentaries that did this. Michael was going through agony everyday and had to cope with idiots like him portraying him as a child molester.
This is by far the saddest story in entertainment, all he needed was help not being mocked by the media and his father.
R.IP Michael, Never Forgotten! xx

Anonymous said...

Upset, Aimee

5windsOfvenus said...

Celebrities are like archtypes, very simular to the role that the old gods and goddesses played to the people of ancient times... We seem to need our archtypes..... It's just too bad that alot of our modern archtypes seem to bring out the worst in culture & people, but the world is insane, we all know that.... If it weren't insane, we would talk out our global problems in a considerate and compassionate way with true intentions for solutions.... I think most world leaders need to be sent to anger management programs and alot of councilling... .

Anyways I think the public have treated alot of folks pretty shitty, not just Michael Jackson; it's pretty harsh he got picked on so badly and it's pretty harsh that it's taken his death for him to earn a little compassion from people...

Sometimes people suck but I am an optimist, I have hope for our collective societies to become more mature then all this bullshit....

Anyways that's just my food for thought....

Anonymous said...

i wonder why this story isn't more publicized? i think these are facts that the world needs to be reminded of!

christie trini

Anonymous said...

I personally think the people who compare a celeb to a god/goddess, could easily be an idiot. Oh and btw, gods/goddesses don't die.

Anonymous said...

GOD/GODDESSES ARE IMMORTAL - WELL SO IS M.J. HIS MUSIC WILL LIVE FOREVER AS HE WAS, IS AND WILL FOREVER BE THE ONE AND ONLY....THE KING OF POP! BLESS N RIP. L O V E..

Larerell said...

thanks for this. it was like a revelation hit me when he announced he had vitiligo..i too have that disorder. i wish we could have known about it, then perhaps he wouldn't have been branded weird, hypocondriac, etc...