Christina Applegate Details ‘Pretty Bad’ MS Relapse on ‘Messy’ Podcast

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Christina Applegate recently faced a “pretty bad” relapse of multiple sclerosis. On MeSsy, her joint podcast with Jamie-Lynn Sigler, Applegate shared that she was in such debilitating pain she was unable to shower.

“I’m in relapse right now, pretty bad,” Applegate said at the time of taping. “I haven’t slept for 24 hours because my eye is doing something weird, where every time I close my eye to go to sleep, my right eye starts to shift like this.”

She explained that due to the constant, unrelenting pain and the poor circulation in her legs, she hasn’t showered in three weeks. “My legs have never been this bad,” she said. “I don’t know what’s going on, like, no energy, legs are just done, like, can’t get circulation, I can’t get them to stop hurting.”

Applegate told Sigler, “I’m gonna be honest with you, I need to buy stock in Cottonelle because I haven’t taken a shower in three weeks. Because I can’t stand in my shower. There’s no f- way I can use my shower. I have such a small bench and my a- is so huge these days that I can’t sit on it, it’s like I slip right off of it. So, I’ve been Cottonelle-ing my body.”

Sigler, who revealed in 2016 that she was diagnosed with MS when she was 20, said, “Sometimes you can be doing all the right things, and it’s not fixing the problem.”

Applegate replied, “So then you do all the wrong things, and you just lay in a dark room watching TV, wanting it all to go away. And that’s kind of where I’m at.” She added that she went into a “deep depression” due to the relapse despite being able to take a vacation.

A rep for Applegate confirmed to People that Applegate’s relapse occurred “months ago” when the podcast episode was recorded, which explains how the actress was able to make an appearance at the Emmys earlier this year. Applegate received a huge show of support at the awards show, where she presented the award for Best Supporting Actress in a Comedy. The audience gave her a standing ovation, and Applegate even joked about it in the moment, quipping: “You’re totally shaming me, with a disability, by standing up — it’s fine!” 

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In March, Applegate revealed she was likely living with multiple sclerosis for years before she was diagnosed in an interview with Good Morning America. The segment marked the actress’ first time talking about the autoimmune disease on TV since she was diagnosed in 2021.

“I live kind of in hell,” Applegate told GMA’s Robin Roberts. “I’m never going to wake up and go, ‘This is awesome.’ I’m just going to tell you that. Like, it’s not going to happen. I wake up, and I’m reminded of it every day… But I might get to a place where I function a little bit better. Right now, I’m isolating, and that’s kind of how I’m dealing with it is by not going anywhere because I don’t want to do it. It’s hard.”

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