Amy Schumer says criticism about ‘puffier’ face led to her Cushing syndrome diagnosis

Amy Schumer says criticism about ‘puffier’ face led to her Cushing syndrome diagnosis

Amy Schumer has revealed that she has Cushing syndrome, with the actor sharing that the criticism surrounding her “puffier” face led to her diagnosis.

The 42-year-old comedian shared her diagnosis in Jessica Yellin’s News Not Noise newsletter, which was published on 23 February. Her comments came days after she addressed the concerns about her face, following her appearance onThe Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon.

In the newsletter, she described how she felt “reborn” after being diagnosed with Cushing syndrome, which ​​“happens when the body has too much of the hormone cortisol for a long time,” with treatments ranging from medications to radiation therapy, according to the Mayo Clinic. Schumer also told Yellin that when she discovered her health condition, she was in the midst of advertising season two of her show, Life & Beth.

“While I was doing press on camera for my Hulu show, I was also in MRI machines four hours at a time, having my veins shut down from the amount of blood drawn and thinking I may not be around to see my son grow up,” she said. “So finding out I have the kind of Cushing that will just work itself out and I’m healthy was the greatest news imaginable. It has been a crazy couple weeks for me and my family.”

Schumer acknowledged that amid her “fears about [her] health”, fans were making comments about her appearance during different TV interviews, which ultimately encouraged her to go to a doctor.

“I also had to be on camera having the internet chime in. But thank God for that,” she continued. “Because that’s how I realized something was wrong. Just like when I realized I had named my son something that didn’t sound so good. The internet is undefeated, as they say.”

Schumer’s remark about her son comes nearly four years after she legally changed his name, since the name bored an unfortunate homonym. More specifically, she and her husband Chris Fisher changed their son’s name from “Gene Attel Fischer” to “Gene David Fischer”, after discovering through people on social media that they “by accident, named [their] son ‘genital’”.

During her conversation with Schumer, Yellin also acknowledged that her Cushing syndrome diagnosis was “personal medical information,” before asking the actor why she was speaking out about the condition. In response, the Trainwreck star went on to praise News Not Noise as a publication, before hitting back at some of the scrutiny she’s faced while in the spotlight.

“I find you to be my favorite credible news source for many years. Your News Not Noise model has helped me personally navigate these harrowing times we are living through. I also wanted to advocate for women’s health,” Schumer told Yellin. “The shaming and criticism of our ever-changing bodies is something I have dealt with and witnessed for a long time. I want so much for women to love themselves and be relentless when fighting for their own health in a system that usually doesn’t believe them.”

She went on to add how she wants to help “women know that it’s abnormal to have extremely painful periods,” and she wants to encourage them to find doctors who treat endometriosis, a condition that she’s also struggling with.

As noted by the Mayo Clinic, endometriosis is an often “painful condition in which tissue that is similar to the inner lining of the uterus grows outside the uterus”. It can take several years for people with uteruses to get diagnosed with the condition, and research into the disorder is limited. Schumer first underwent a hysterectomy and an appendectomy to treat the disease in September 2021.

Speaking to Yellin for the newsletter, Schumer went on to emphasise why it was so important for her to speak out about her physical health.

“I want women to value feeling strong, healthy, and comfortable in their own skin,” the comedian concluded. “I am extremely privileged to have the resources I have for my health and I know it’s not that way for most people. I am grateful and want to use my voice to continue to fight for women.”

On 15 February, Schumer first took to Instagram to respond to questions about the “puffiness” of her face during an appearance on The Tonight Show. Alongside a poster promoting the new season of her comedy series, Life and Beth, Schumer began her message by encouraging fans to watch earlier runs of the show. “Thank you so much for everyone’s input about my face!” she wrote.

“I’ve enjoyed feedback and deliberation about my appearance as all women do for almost 20 years. And you’re right, it is puffier than normal right now,” she added.

Schumer then reminded her followers that she lives with endometriosis, before noting that while there are “some medical and hormonal things going on in [her] world right now”, she was “okay”.

After expressing that “women’s bodies have barely been studied medically compared to men”, The Humans star went on to describe another reason why she was sharing the statement. “I also believe a woman doesn’t need any excuse for her physical appearance and owes no explanation,” she continued. “But I wanted to take the opportunity to advocate for self-love and acceptance of the skin you’re in.”

Earlier this week, Schumer also hit back at the criticism she’s faced about her appearance, with claims about why she thinks people on the internet don’t like her.

“I think they’re mad that I’m not thinner. I think they’re mad I’m not prettier and that I still feel like I have a right to speak,” she said during an episode of Amanda Hirsch’s Not Skinny But Not Fat podcast. “And I think that they don’t want any women to speak,” the comedian added, before asking: “What woman has ever opened her mouth and not been torn to shreds?”

When Hirsh asked if she’d become tougher over the years due to online criticism, Schumer acknowledged that she’s used to this scrutiny because of her Hollywood career. “It’s been a long time people have been coming for me,” she said. “So yeah, it’s just about how I’m feeling about myself.”