Wendy Williams Diagnosed With Same Dementia as Bruce Willis

The former talk show host was diagnosed with primary progressive aphasia and frontotemporal dementia (FTD) in 2023 "after undergoing a battery of medical tests."

Wendy Williams has been diagnosed with dementia. More than two years after Williams stepped away from her talk show in June 2021 amid legal battles and health woes, including her medical struggles with Graves' disease and lymphedema, her care team shared a health update with fans Thursday morning announcing that Williams was diagnosed with primary progressive aphasia and frontotemporal dementia (FTD), the same form of dementia as Bruce Willis, in 2023.

"The decision to share this news was difficult and made after careful consideration, not only to advocate for understanding and compassion for Wendy, but to raise awareness about aphasia and frontotemporal dementia and support the thousands of others facing similar circumstances," a statement shared by the former talk show host's care team reads. "Unfortunately, many individuals diagnosed with aphasia and frontotemporal dementia face stigma and misunderstanding, particularly when they begin to exhibit behavioral changes but have not yet received a diagnosis. There is hope that with early detection and far more empathy, the stigma associated with dementia will be eliminated, and those affected will receive the understanding, support, and care they deserve and need."

In confirming her diagnosis, Williams' care team acknowledged that "over the past few years, questions have been raised at times about Wendy's ability to process information and many have speculated about Wendy's condition, particularly when she began to lose words, act erratically at times, and have difficulty understanding financial transactions." They said that Williams was officially diagnosed in 2023 "after undergoing a battery of medical tests." Her team said Williams "would not have received confirmation of these diagnoses were it not for the diligence of her current care team, who she chose, and the extraordinary work of the specialists at Weill Cornell Medicine," adding that "receiving a diagnosis has enabled Wendy to receive the medical care she requires."

According to the statement, Williams "is still able to do many things for herself. 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. She is appreciative of the many kind thoughts and good wishes being sent her way."

The Thursday statement was released just two days ahead of Williams' return to TV in Lifetime's shocking new documentary Where Is Wendy Williams?, which was filmed between 2022 and 2023. Set to debut on Feb. 24, the documentary sees Williams and her family addressing speculation about her life post-cancellation of her talk show, including her health and cognitive abilities. According to PEOPLE, while the documentary was initially slated to chronicle the next stage of Williams' career and her plans to release a new podcast, production was forced to stop and pivot in 2023 when Williams entered a treatment facility for "cognitive issues."