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Avril Lavigne returned to the spotlight earlier this year after being forced to take a lengthy health-related hiatus due to her battle with Lyme disease.
Now the singer-songwriter, who's the cover artist on the Oct. 20 issue of Billboard magazine, is opening up about that battle, from its onset to the struggles it caused to the treatment that finally brought her relief.
"I’m achy, I’m fatigued, I cannot get the f--- out of bed — what the f--- is wrong with me?" That's the question Lavigne began asking doctors back in 2014, when she first realized something was suddenly amiss.
At the time, she was performing on her eponymous tour, but doing so became increasingly difficult.
It took some time for the now-34-year-old to find out what was behind her spiraling symptoms, and it might have taken even longer had it not been for a friend who told her, "Dude, I think you have Lyme disease."
So Lavigne reached out to another famous face who was suffering from that same infectious tick-borne ailment — reality TV star Yolanda Hadid, who just last year published a memoir titled, "Believe Me: My Battle With the Invisible Disability of Lyme Disease."
According to Billboard, Hadid recommended a specialist to Lavigne. But confirming the illness didn't lead to instant relief, despite the fact that she's told the magazine that she was feeling "pretty good" in 2015.
Far from it.
"I was in bed for f---ing two years," she revealed in the new interview.
And finding the right treatment was an evolving process.
"It’s a bug — a spirochete," she said of the spiral-shaped bacteria at the root of the disease. "So you take these antibiotics, and they start killing it. But it’s a smart bug: It morphs into a cystic form, so you have to take other antibiotics at the same time. It went undiagnosed for so long that I was kind of f---ed."
Though it's taken that treatment a long time to turn things around, in April, she returned to the red carpet for the first time in two years, and just last month, the "Sk8er Boi" singer released her first new single since 2015.
In a recent post to her website, she wrote, "Having gone through the battle of my lifetime, I’m stronger than ever and looking forward to sharing my renewed voice and energy for my life with my fans through this new music."