As we sit between shows in his Palladium dressing room, Michael recalls those dark times.
‘In 2004, I was on the West End stage in The Woman In White, and for every show I had to climb into a fat suit to play the obese Count Fosco.
Dr Richard Strick was one of the doctors appointed by the District Attorney to perform the court ordered examination of Michael in December 1993 and had reviewed Michael’s medical records, he has stated that the reasons Michael had so many nose jobs were for “reconstructive” reasons due to the skin healing problems and scarring associated with his discoid lupus.
His first malar rash appeared in 1983 which is also when he had his second nose job.
‘If anyone had told me when I was struggling with ME that one day I’d be back in London’s West End, I wouldn’t have thought it possible,’ he says.
‘I thought my career had come to an end because I no longer had the energy, or even the inclination, to work again.‘I’d be totally exhausted by mid-afternoon, and I could barely climb the stairs at home.
When you have one auto immune disorder your propensity for having another is increased and it seems as though Michael first developed vitiligo as a child and then the first signs that he also had lupus were at the age of 18 when he suffered a pneumothorax related to pleurisy, followed by the appearance of the discoid lupus rash at the age of 24. I have vitiligo and uh, I am totally completely allergic to the sun.
The Discoid Lupus Malar "Butterfly" Rash He presented with one of the trademark symptoms of the illness, the Malar or Butterfly Rash in 19, which reappeared again in 1986. I’m not even suppose to be outside actually, even if I am in the shade the sunrays can destroy my skin.