Abby Lee Miller diagnosed with non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma, magazine reports
Former “Dance Moms” star Abby Lee Miller reportedly has been diagnosed with a form of non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma a day after undergoing emergency spinal surgery.
People magazine reports doctors originally thought Miller had a spinal infection after complaining of back pain for several weeks that led to her being paralyzed from the neck down, but determined it to be cancer after Tuesday’s surgery.
“It was not an infection, it was a type of a non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma — it’s a type of a cancer,” Dr. Hooman M. Melamed, an orthopedic spine surgeon at Cedar Sinai Marina Del Rey Hospital who has been treating the star, told People. “We’re getting an oncologist involved, and we have to figure out what the next steps are as far as chemotherapy or radiation or more spine surgery. Depending on the tumor type, depending on the sensitivity of the tumor — it just depends the type, but I feel more than yes, she will undergo chemotherapy or radiation.”
After the four-hour surgery, Miller began to feel more sensation while recovering in the ICU.
“She’s made some recovery in 24 hours, which is better than no recovery,” he said. “Nobody wants to end up thinking they’re going to be paralyzed for the rest of their life. That’s a reality that’s facing all of these patients going into it. All you can do is pray and, as a surgeon, you maximize everything you can for the spinal cord to recover itself. I am hopeful.”
While Melamed says he’s more “optimistic” as Miller is starting to regain sensation, “we’re still not out of the woods.”
He told People there’s still a chance the cancer could spread. They haven’t determined what stage the cancer is in yet.
In May, Miller, 51, a Pittsburgh native, was sentenced to a year and one day in federal prison with two years of supervised release for bankruptcy fraud. Because of good behavior, she was transferred to a residential re-entry facility in March.