- Jeannie Mai is opening up and sharing more about her emergency throat surgery for epiglottis that ended her run on Dancing With The Stars.
- In an all-new episode of her YouTube show Hello Hunnay, Jeannie had her former pro partner, Brandon Armstrong, on to talk about everything that happened.
Jeannie Mai is opening up and sharing more about her emergency throat surgery for epiglottis that ended her run on Dancing With The Stars earlier this year. In an all-new episode of her YouTube show Hello Hunnay, Jeannie had her former pro partner, Brandon Armstrong, on to talk about everything that happened. And it’s super scary.
“I’m going to be honest with you. Even when I was diagnosed, I did not take it seriously. I was not focused on saving my life, I was focused on competing in Dancing With the Stars,” she says.
“We really thought we could take that mirrorball,” she continues. “I got sick, but it was just, what I thought, a sore throat. That morning that I felt my sore throat I went to go rehearse with Brandon at 7 in the morning and I was very tired but I had a long day of shooting after that.”
The next day she woke up with a “heavy sore throat” and that she had to cancel practice with Brandon for the first time ever. She went to the doctor but was misdiagnosed. He gave her steroid shots for what he thought was just a sore throat, and Jeannie pushed on.
“The next day, of course, I stayed consistent and rescheduled the rehearsal with Brandon,” Mai recalls. “I was almost dying in that room, but I didn’t know it [at the time] because I was pushing through and hyped up on steroids.”
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But she was still in pain for a few days after that and things were getting worse.
“What I was dancing with was a numb neck because I couldn’t feel anything when it was really closing up,” Mai remembers. “My throat was 60% closed. It was numb, but it was closed. After I went home, I wrote a letter to [my fiance] Jeezy and said, ‘Hey, I’m going to go to bed at like 9:30. I feel terrible. Please pray for me.'”
Then, the next day when she woke up around 5 a.m., she couldn’t breathe.
“I was literally like gasping for air. I don’t want to wake up J so I crawl out of bed, I go and grab some aspirin to reduce the swelling … the aspirin sticks on the back of my tongue and doesn’t go down because there’s no hole.”
Things happened quickly from there. Jeezy rushed her to urgent care, where she was misdiagnosed a second time. After she called a friend who told her she was seeing the wrong type of doctor, she finally went to an ear, nose, and throat doctor instead.
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“I obliged, because of J, went there and found out that my throat was going to close in the next few hours,” Mai reveals. “I called Brandon and was so upset. Was absolutely enraged in tears, like, ‘They’re making me do this, I’m so sorry.” Jeannie was forced to withdraw from the competition, was hospitalized, and underwent throat surgery.
She gave shout-outs to her supporters who have lifted her spirits during her recovery. “Yo, I’m ready to be back here working every day,” she says. “Anybody out there who knows what it’s like to be sick, where you can’t do anything. You can’t talk, you can’t move … it’s the worst feeling ever. So I really thank you guys for holding it down and just keeping me company. And Real fam, I’ve got all of your messages. I’m back. Long-winded is in the house. Do something ’bout it, she’s back!”
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