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LeAnn Rimes Brings Battle With Psoriasis to Center Stage
Date:4/23/2010

Diagnosed at age 2, the singer is teaming with health groups to bolster patient support

FRIDAY, April 23 (HealthDay News) -- The low point for country music star LeAnn Rimes came when her psoriasis got so bad she actually started bleeding onstage.

"I would bleed onstage because my skin would crack. It was so horrible," she said.

"Psoriasis definitely takes a physical and emotional toll. I've had to deal with people judging me," she added.

That is why Rimes is teaming up with the American Academy of Dermatology and the National Psoriasis Foundation to be a spokeswoman for the Stop Hiding From Psoriasis awareness campaign.

The campaign is urging people with psoriasis, a chronic skin condition, to pledge to get involved with their own disease, including making a commitment to find a good dermatologist, find the support they need, tell their story or just learn more about the disease.

"I wanted to be involved in this campaign to educate the rest of the world that this is not contagious. You're not going to get psoriasis by standing too close to us. We're human," Rimes said. "There are so many people out there who are dealing with this. We want to make people feel they're not alone in this fight against psoriasis," she explained.

"I hope this is kind of a chain reaction," she continued. "It's been so inspiring to me and also empowering to be able to talk about it. I hope this spirals out of control -- in a good way -- so we can better support each other."

According to the campaign, nearly 7 million Americans have psoriasis, an immune disorder where skin cells grow too fast, resulting in thickened or scaly patches. The condition usually arises in the teenage or young adult years and manifests mainly on the scalp, knees, elbows or torso, although it can develop anywhere on the skin or nails. There is no cure for psoriasis.

Rimes was diagnosed with the conditio
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