The Secret Life of Selena Gomez has just taken a medical turn: The singer says she underwent a kidney transplant over the summer, and the donor was her pal Francia Raisa, who starred in “The Secret Life of the American Teenager.”
The “It Ain’t Me” singer, who limited her public appearances over the summer despite the release of new tracks such as “Bad Liar” and “Fetish,” said the surgery was a result of her longtime battle with lupus and that she was keeping a low profile to recover, she revealed Thursday morning on Instagram.
“I’m very aware some of my fans had noticed I was laying low for part of the summer and questioning why I wasn’t promoting my new music, which I was extremely proud of,” Gomez divulged. “So I found out I needed to get a kidney transplant due to my Lupus and was recovering. It was what I needed to do for my overall health.”
The 25-year-old famously took a break from her career in late 2013 to undergo chemotherapy for the autoimmune disease that she’s dealt with for years. Gomez has been candid about its effects on her, and, in August 2016, she took another break to cope with the disease’s challenging side effects of anxiety, panic attacks and depression.
The latest hurdle appeared to result in the kidney transplant, which she explained in the lengthy Instagram post that featured an image of her and Raisa holding hands and smiling as they lay in adjacent hospital beds.
The Disney Channel alum said she planned to share the details of her journey “soon” and thanked her family and doctors for caring for her during the harrowing experience.
“And finally, there aren’t words to describe how I can possibly thank my beautiful friend Francia Raisa. She gave me the ultimate gift and sacrifice by donating her kidney to me. I am incredibly blessed. I love you so much sis,” she said.
Gomez’s fans took to Raisa’s Instagram account following the announcement to flood her comments with gratitude.
“What a great friend you are god bless you,” said one commenter, with another writing. “Thank you!!!! You saved selena??!! You are an angel??”
Gomez concluded her remarks by saying that “lupus continues to be very misunderstood but progress is being made,” and urging her followers to visit the Lupus Research Alliance website.