Wendy Williams Has Been Diagnosed With Aphasia and Dementia

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Just yesterday, People reported that Wendy Williams has been in a care facility for “cognitive issues” since last year. Now, a representative for the former talk-show host has released a statement clarifying what those are: Apparently, Williams, 59, has been diagnosed with primary progressive aphasia and frontotemporal dementia.

In the statement, Williams’s rep said that both diagnoses have “already presented significant hurdles in Wendy’s life.” Aphasia is a disorder that affects a person’s speech and ability to understand language. Frontotemporal dementia is a progressive disorder affecting cognitive functions. It’s a decidedly cruel diagnosis for a woman whose major gift was talking.

Williams stepped away from the spotlight in 2021, when she did not return to her eponymous talk show, the Wendy Williams Show; the final episode aired without its host. According to a new documentary, premiering this weekend on Lifetime, she received a court-appointed legal guardian around the same time that she stepped back from her show. That person, whose identity is not public, is the one who has control over Williams’s stay at her care facility.

“Wendy is still able to do many things for herself,” today’s statement reads. “Most importantly she maintains her trademark sense of humor and is receiving the care she requires to make sure she is protected and that her needs are addressed.”

Wendy Williams Has Been Diagnosed With Aphasia and Dementia