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Christina Applegate Gives Heartbreaking Update on MS Diagnosis: "I Live in Hell"

The beloved actor first revealed her MS diagnosis in 2021.

Since publicly unveiling her multiple sclerosis (MS) diagnosis, Christina Applegate has stepped out of the spotlight to focus on her health and taking care of her young daughter Sadie. While Applegate has experienced her share of health challenges over the years (a 2008 breast cancer diagnosis followed by an ovarian and fallopian tube removal surgery in 2017), the Dead to Me star says nothing could have prepared her for how "exhausting" life is with a progressively disabling disease like MS.

RELATED: Selma Blair Reveals the Early MS Sign She Didn't Know Was a Symptom.

"With the disease of MS, it's never a good day. You just have little [expletive] days," Applegate, who first revealed her diagnosis in 2021, said in a Variety interview.

"There are just certain things that people take for granted in their lives that I took for granted," the beloved actor explained, pointing out showering or walking down a flight of stairs.

MS is a potentially disabling disease that impacts the central nervous system—specifically the brain, spinal cord, and optic nerves—and "disrupts signals to and from the brain," per the National MS Society. "This interruption of communication signals causes unpredictable symptoms such as numbness, tingling, mood changes, memory problems, pain, fatigue, blindness and/or paralysis." The exact cause of MS is unknown, and the longevity and intensity of symptoms varies by patient.

Netflix's Dead to Me is Applegate's last on-screen credit in which she plays the character Jen Harding. The show's third and final season aired in 2022, and since its premiere, Applegate has only made a handful of public appearances. Her first on-camera sit-down interview is set to air on Good Morning America tomorrow.

In a teaser shared by GMA, Applegate gives a heartbreaking update about her MS diagnosis and how the debilitating disease affects every corner of her life, from her career to interacting with others.

"I live in hell," she states matter-of-factly.

Speaking with GMA anchor Robin Roberts, Applegate explains that she doesn't get out of her house much so the interview "is really difficult for my system." However, she adds, "The support is wonderful and I'm really grateful."

Roberts then switches gears to ask Applegate about her big Emmys moment in 2024, when she graced the stage as a presenter. The surprise cameo earned Applegate a standing ovation from her peers, which she matched with a witty punchline.

"Thank you so much, oh my god," an emotional Applegate beamed before joking, "You're totally shaming me with disability by standing up, it's fine, OK."

"I actually kind of blacked out," Applegate recalls in her new interview. "I don't even know what I said. I don't know what I was doing. I got so freaked out that I didn't even know what was happening anymore."

Looking back, she says, "I felt really beloved and it was a really beautiful thing."

In the years following her diagnosis, Applegate has utilized her platform to raise awareness about MS and its symptoms. However, she also wants fans to get comfortable with the idea that they may never see her act on camera again.

"I can't even imagine going to set right now. This is a progressive disease. I don't know if I'm going to get worse," she reasoned in her Variety feature. The Sweetest Thing star added that her future may lie in voiceover acting instead: "I have to support my family and keep my brain working."

Fans can watch Applegate's full on-camera sit-down interview tomorrow, March 11, on GMA. She is joined by The Sopranos star Jamie-Lynn Sigler, who was diagnosed with MS over two decades ago.

Emily Weaver
Emily is a NYC-based freelance entertainment and lifestyle writer — though, she’ll never pass up the opportunity to talk about women’s health and sports (she thrives during the Olympics). Read more
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