Country singer Drake White has revealed he’s been diagnosed with a rare brain disorder.
He’s known about the diagnosis — an abnormal vascular formation in the brain which constricts blood flow, called an arteriovenous malformation (AVM) — since January.
“It was basically stealing blood from my brain,” White told People. “The neurologist told me that I should be thankful it was caught in time, because it could have caused a stroke.”
According to the Mayo Clinic, an AVM “is a tangle of abnormal blood vessels connecting arteries and veins in the brain.”
White nearly collapsed last week while performing in Roanoke, Virginia. At the time, he tweeted to his fans, “Hey friends — sorry we had to cut it short tonight. I’m getting checked out by some of Roanoke’s finest docs and will keep you posted. Thanks for your prayers and continued support. Love ya!”
He says his health began declining while at home in Nashville last winter, with a headache so bad it landed him in the hospital.
“That morning, I had worked out and went to a lunch meeting, and that’s when the headache started,” White said. “By 2 p.m. I was in bed seeing spots in my left eye, and that’s when my left side started going numb. I tried to sleep it off but woke up with the same intense headache.”
White and his wife rushed to the emergency room.
“The true nightmare is having something wrong with you and not knowing what it is,” he said. “Nobody could tell me what was wrong.”
After an MRI, doctors discovered he had an AVM, likely from birth.
White has been getting treated for the mass. He said “75 percent” of it has been knocked out and he could possibly be AVM-free by the end of this year.
In the meantime, he’s been performing when he can.
“I’m not telling this story for me,” White said. “Someone needs to hear it, and God wants me to share it. It will help people believe in miracles, and I will feel that energy. The world needs that kind of energy right now.”