Words by: Regina Gonzalez, CNN
Rapper DMX has left a Northern New Jersey hospital after his year-long struggle with sickle cell disease, TMZ reports.
TMZ sources say X, 44, arrived at Morristown Medical Center early Tuesday and was placed on life support after a possible overdose. X was told to give up most of his medical care and sit in a room by himself. However, we’re told X began breathing on his own and entered the hospital’s “Sick Lad” room.
X — whose birth name is Earl Simmons — began revealing his health struggles with the condition in 2016, and released a rare album, “Blackness Reign” , in August. The album was produced by Havoc of the rap group Mobb Deep.
According to his website, X has five children with four different women, and has shown signs of health problems since he was young.
Sickle cell disease is a blood disorder that stunts the growth of red blood cells and can cause pain, infections and inflammation of the organs. The disease often appears in children and can be inherited from parents, particularly African-Americans. An abnormal strain of sickle cell affects about 1 in 150 people worldwide, and affects more African-Americans than any other race, according to the Sickle Cell Disease Foundation. The disease is not known to cause permanent damage, but to some individuals, it can make it painful to move or hold their arms or legs, increase the risk of infection and can make the body extra acidic.
The rapper’s issues with the disease date back to his childhood, when he reportedly took poison to try to stop the pain. Simmons told Rolling Stone last year that he had always struggled with pain.
“I know it’s my disease and I’ve never wanted to be something that I’m not, but I don’t want it to define me,” he said. “But I’m not giving up hope. I’ve always had pain, and I know I’m going to have pain for the rest of my life. All I can do is pray. I’ve been praying, not so much, but even when I’ve been down, I’ve prayed to God that one day I can be a whole person again.”
TMZ reports that DMX’s managers contacted the medical center and made arrangements for him to be taken home early on Tuesday.
TMZ also reported that Simmons is going into rehab to get better.