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Solange recently revealed her struggle with an autonomic disorder that caused her to cancel an upcoming New Year’s Eve performance at Afropunk Fest Johannesburg in South Africa. She broke the news to fans about the condition — referring to a breakdown of the autonomic nervous system which controls involuntary bodily functions — via Instagram Wednesday.

“The past five months I have been quietly treating, and working through an Autonomic Disorder. It been a journey that hasn’t been easy on me…,” she wrote on Instagram. “Sometimes I feel cool, and other times not so cool at all. It’s a complicated diagnoses, and I’m still learning so much myself, but right now, my doctors are not clearing me for such an extended lengthy flight, and doing a rigorous show right after.”

Afropunk organizers, though saddened by Solange’s cancellation, understood that her health was a top priority, they said in a Facebook message.

Several types of autonomic disorders exist, but the singer neglected to say what specific type that she had been diagnosed with by doctors. Here’s what else we know about this condition:

Many Americans are like Solange: An estimated more than one million people suffer from a primary autonomic system disorder, according to the Mayo Clinic.

Symptoms are diverse: It’s likely that Solange has experienced any of several issues that run the gamut from lightheadedness to cognitive impairments. Symptoms can also include physical weakness, fatigue and problems with regulating the heart rate, blood pressure, body temperature, perspiration as well as bowel and bladder functions, according to Mayo. Gastrointestinal ailments are also possible.

Autonomic disorders can be the result of another disease: This disorders can be isolated or be an effect of something else, according to New York University’s Langone Health department. Parkinson’s disease, cancer, autoimmune diseases or diabetes can cause this condition.


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