Justin Bieber cancels shows due to facial paralysis after Ramsay Hunt syndrome diagnosis

ITV News' Callum Watkinson heard from a woman who, after contracting the same condition as Justin Bieber, has experienced 20 months of face paralysis

Justin Bieber has revealed he has “full paralysis” on one side of his face, forcing him to cancel a number of shows after a virus attacked the nerves in his ear.

The Canadian pop superstar, who has cancelled upcoming shows on his Purpose tour, explained he was suffering from “pretty serious” Ramsay Hunt syndrome.

Posting a video on Instagram, the 28-year-old said: “It is from this virus that attacks the nerve in my ear in my facial nerves and has caused my face to have paralysis.

“As you can see, this eye is not blinking. I can’t smile on this side of my face. This nostril will not move, so there’s full paralysis on this side of my face.”

In the video, Bieber attempts to smile, blink, and move his face but one side remained still as he continued to speak.

He added: “So for those who are frustrated by my cancelations of the next shows, I’m just physically, obviously not able of doing them. This is pretty serious as you can see.

“I wish this wasn’t the case but obviously my body is telling me I gotta slow down.

“I hope you guys understand, and I’ll be using this time to just rest and relax and get back to 100% so I can do what I was born to do. But in the meantime, this ain’t it.”

Want more from the world of arts and entertainment? Listen to the latest ITV News podcast, Unscripted, brought to you by Arts Editor Nina Nannar

Charles Nduka, founder of charity Facial Palsy UK and a plastic surgeon who specialises in facial paralysis, said an overwhelming number of his patients had experienced stress or an underlying illnesses just before their Ramsey Hunt syndrome symptoms appeared.

He told ITV News: "Patients that receive the right treatments have a 70% chance of full recovery, whereas that drops to 50% recovery without."

Bieber did not mention treatment in his video, but said he has been doing facial exercises to try to regain movement. The What Do You Mean singer added he is not sure when he will recover

He said: “We don’t know how much time it is going to be but it’s going to be okay, I have hope and I trust God. I trust it is all for a reason. I’m not sure what that is right now but in the meantime I am going to rest.”

Bieber received an outpouring of love for his honesty from celebrity friends including DJ Khaled, Romeo Beckham and his wife Hailey Bieber who wrote: “I love you baby.”

Bieber kicked off his world tour with a 52-date North American leg in 2022, starting in San Diego on February 18.