The Scottish radio DJ was forced to step down from hosting Desert Island Discs after 12 years due to her health woes

KIRSTY YOUNG HAS DETAILED HER BATTLE WITH RHEUMATOID ARTHRITIS AND FIBROMYALGIA

TINA CAMPBELL8 NOVEMBER 2023

Kirsty Young has opened up about the devastating health battle which led to her having to quit as host of Radio 4’s Desert Island discs after 12 years.

The radio DJ, 54, stepped down from the popular programme in 2019 after struggling with debilitating rheumatoid arthritis and fibromyalgia.

Rheumatoid arthritis is a condition that causes pain and stiffness in the joints, while fibromyalgia is a long-term condition that causes pain all over the body and tiredness.

Young first suffered with arthritis which led to her being diagnosed with secondary fibromyalgia, which occurs in a patient with an underlying rheumatic disease.

Prior to doctors determining what was wrong with her, Young confessed she thought that she was “going mental” due to the excruciating pain caused by her fibromyalgia.

KIRSTY YOUNG SAID BEFORE HER DIAGNOSIS SHE FELT ‘LIKE A LOSER’ BECAUSE SHE WAS UNABLE TO DO THINGS THAT SHE COULD BEFORE

The pain cause her personality to “corrode” and left her feeling “like a loser” because she was unable to do things that she could have done before. Appearing on The Adam Buxton podcast, she explained: “It was at its worst for a couple of years. You feel like you’re going mental. Quitting my job didn’t make me feel like it, but the pain it starts to corrode your personality. 

“You start to lose your sense of humour, you can’t really cope with things that would normally wash over you.

“I felt like a loser because you can’t do things; if there’s a long drive to take your child somewhere, you can’t do that long drive,” she continued.

“Or if it’s standing out in the cold to watch a hockey match, that makes you feel very bad. That’s part of the grinding down of your sense of self.”

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Initially she says she was taking many “complicated” medications to treat fibromyalgia, but that it is now “under control” and she only takes some medication to manage her arthritis. “It’s all calmed down now, it’s under control. It is treatable,” she said. “You have to do things to keep your health good, and if I don’t make sure I get good sleep, have lower stress levels, walk every day, do yoga – and I took a whole [lot] of complicated medications, which I’m glad to say I’m off now,” she added.

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