Read why Selena Gomez had a kidney transplant. Know more details about her kidney donor, Francia Raisa, and the disease called Lupus.
Singer-actress Selena Gomez’s kidney transplant was recently revealed by the actress herself via her Instagram account.
The photo posted on Instagram shows Selena Gomez (age 25) and Francia Raisa (age 29), holding each others’ hands and smiling at each other while lying on separate beds in hospital gowns.
It was a very touching picture to behold. And even without reading the message attached to it, one could see the gratitude and happiness in Selena Gomez’s eyes as she looked at her best friend, Francia Raisa.
The lengthy message of Selena Gomez explained why she had been laying low in promoting her music. The most-followed personality on Instagram (127 million and counting) said she had a kidney transplant due to her Lupus and was recovering from it.
She wanted to publicly thank her team of doctors and her family for her pre and post-surgery, but most of all, she wanted to thank her friend Francia Raisa for donating a kidney to her.
Selena Gomez said that Francia Raisa gave her “the ultimate gift and sacrifice” by being her kidney donor.
The pop star also posted a picture of her long scar as a result of her kidney transplant operation
Image Credit: @selenagomez instagram
selenagomez I’m very aware some of my fans had noticed I was laying low for part of the summer and questioning why I wasn’t promoting my new music, which I was extremely proud of. So I found out I needed to get a kidney transplant due to my Lupus and was recovering. It was what I needed to do for my overall health. I honestly look forward to sharing with you, soon my journey through these past several months as I have always wanted to do with you. Until then I want to publicly thank my family and incredible team of doctors for everything they have done for me prior to and post-surgery. And finally, there aren’t words to describe how I can possibly thank my beautiful friend Francia Raisa. She gave me the ultimate gift and sacrifice by donating her kidney to me. I am incredibly blessed. I love you so much sis. Lupus continues to be very misunderstood but progress is being made. For more information regarding Lupus please go to the Lupus Research Alliance website: www.lupusresearch.org/ -by grace through faith
Francia Raisa also posted a similar picture. Her message showed just how beautiful her soul is. She said, “I am beyond grateful that God would trust me with something that not only saved a life, but changed mine in the process.”
franciaraisa I am beyond grateful that God would trust me with something that not only saved a life, but changed mine in the process. This was part of our story, and we will share it soon, but what is important now is that this is not the only story.
For more information regarding Lupus, please go to the Lupus Research Alliance website: www.lupusresearch.org — Love you sis, so glad we’re on this journey together. xx
While Selena Gomez’s Instagram is full of comments wishing that she will get better soon, Francia Raisa’s Instagram is dominated by people who heaped praises and thanks for her moving, selfless act of being Selena’s kidney donor.
The Selena Gomez – Francia Raisa Connection
Many people are asking why Francia Raisa was very generous to Selena Gomez, to the point of giving her a life-saving kidney. Are Francia and Selena Gomez related to each other?
No, they are not. But they might as well be. They consider themselves as sisters.
Francia almost always calls Selena her little sister in her Instagram posts with Selena.
Image Credit: @franciaraisa instagram
franciaraisa When we first met you gave me a necklace that says “a sister is a forever friend” your support and words this night meant the world to me. I love you sis! My forever friend. Happy 23rd Birthday!
Every year, Francia Raisa never fails to post a message for Selena Gomez’s birthday.
Last year, she gave a very long but wonderful message for Selena’s birthday.
Image Credit: @franciaraisa instagram
franciaraisa I went through heartbreak this year and you left the studio and drove out of your way to come see me and comfort me. I received good news last month and you facetimed me minutes before you went up on stage just to congratulate me. There are so many moments we have and things you do that I cherish and don’t take for granted. Wether its crying, laughing, or simply sitting on my kitchen floor throwing our hands up in the air confused at life, I’m thankful you’re always there. I am obsessed with every memory we’ve built in the last 8 years and the ones we have yet to create. I am so grateful that God put you in my life when he did. If you think about the time that we met and where we were in our lives when we first hung out, his timing was perfect. It’s been so inspiring watching you grow and to grow with you. I learn so much from you and I’m so so so proud of you. Happy Birthday Hermana. Love you so so so much @selenagomez
Selena Gomez and Francia Raisa met at a Disney and ABC charity event at the Children’s Hospital back in 2007, according to BBC.
Francia said the first time she met Selena Gomez, “we just clicked”, she told Latina magazine. The friendship had not been publicized that much but Selena Gomez and Francia Raisa posts on their Instagram, photos and messages for each other.
Selena had sweet words for Francia, too, showing the deep friendship that they have.
Image Credit: @selenagomez Instagram
selenagomez Francia, you have been there through so many phases of life with me. The only thing I want you to know is how much I value YOU. You are more than you realize. I love you.
Other old photos of the two of them together resurface only now, after Selena Gomez revealed that her kidney donor is her best friend.
Like Selena, Francia is also an actress and commercial model. She was born and raised in California and is of Honduran and Mexican descent.
Her father is a very famous radio personality known as El Cucuy de la Mañana who was honored with a star on Hollywood Walk of Fame in 2014.
Francia had been part of several tv shows and films and is known for her roles in the comedy film “Bring It On: All or Nothing” and the tv series “The Secret Life of the American Teenager”.
The kidney donor is very much like Selena, especially when it comes to philanthropy and charity work. At the 3rd Annual Unlikely Heroes Awards which she hosted, Selena Gomez came as one of the presenters to support Francia.
Unlikely Heroes rescues and rehabilitates child victims of slavery. It operates group homes in Philippines, Thailand, Mexico, and United States.
The friendship of Selena Gomez and Francia Raisa is without a doubt, one of the most ideal out there. For if one’s friendship would be put to a test similar to theirs, very few would pass. Would you give a kidney to a friend as Francia Raisa did for Selena?
When was Selena diagnosed with Lupus?
A lot of people, except for die-hard Selena fans, are unaware that Selena had been ill for some time. Many are still asking, when was Selena diagnosed with Lupus?
Selena confirmed to Billboard in October 2015 that she had Lupus. In an interview with Ellen conducted a few days after that revelation, Selena told Ellen that she had been diagnosed with Lupus “three years ago”, meaning Selena had Lupus since 2012. Selena also said during the interview that she had undergone chemotherapy to combat her ailment.
That explains her break from the music scene in 2013 and the much-talked about rehab at “The Meadows” back in January 2014. At that time, most members of the media speculated that Selena checked herself into the facility for either substance abuse or alcoholism.
People erred in their judgment of the pop singer, but Selena continued to keep quiet about her struggles with Lupus. She focused her energy instead, on coming up with her second album “Revival”, which was released in 2015.
Why Selena Gomez’ kidney transplant was needed
Selena had a kidney transplant this summer. Her kidneys, whose primary function is to filter the blood, has been badly damaged by her Lupus.
A TMZ said that back in May, she was rushed to the hospital because of kidney failure. She was on the waiting list of kidney donors at that time.
A damaged kidney could eventually lead to death. When there is acute kidney failure, permanent dialysis may be required. A kidney transplant though, is the better and more viable option, if one has a ready donor.
The US National Kidney Foundation states that in the US, more than 101,000 Americans are on the waitlist for a kidney, but only 17,000 people receive one annually. That translates to 12 people dying daily, just waiting for a kidney.
Selena Gomez is indeed lucky to have a friend like Francia Raisa who was not only willing to donate a kidney but in all probability may have been an eligible match in terms of blood type, tissue typing, and cross-matching.
What is Lupus?
Selena lightly explained to Ellen de Generes in the 2015 interview that Lupus is an autoimmune disease. “You’ll have it forever,” she said. “You just got to take care of yourself. ”
According to Lupus Research alliance, “autoimmune diseases” are disorders wherein the body’s immune system attacks those parts of the body that it’s supposed to protect.
Systemic Lupus Erythematosus (SLE) also known as Lupus, is an automimmune disease that leads to inflammation and damage of various body tissues and can affect the kidney, heart, brain, lungs, blood vessels, joints, and skin. Common symptoms include skin rashes, kidney problems, arthritis, unexplained fever, and extreme fatigue.
Those who are afflicted with Lupus can have “periods of illness, called flares, and periods of wellness, or remission,” according to the website of Lupus Research Alliance.
Selena Gomez, most likely had Lupus nephritis (also known as SLE nephritis), which refers to an inflammation of the kidneys caused by Lupus.
No cure has been found for LFupus, but the illness can be treated with drugs. Most people who are sick of Lupus can lead active lives.
In Selena’s case, the pop star went on tours (though some were canceled). She even had a concert in the Philippines in August of 2016 and had a picture with actress Liza Soberano during her meet and greet.
Aside from concerts, Selena made films and starred in tv specials. That’s why no one guessed she was sick with Lupus all along.
And yes, we know what you’re thinking.
Did Justin Bieber know that Selena had Lupus?
Selena and Justin had been an item from 2011 to 2015, the period wherein she was diagnosed with Lupus and had chemotherapy.
There’s still no confirmation whether Bieber had knowledge about her condition, then.
TMZ reports that Justin had not reached out to Selena regarding the kidney transplant because the ex-couple do not have any communication since they broke up two years ago. And though both of them belong to the Hillsong church, Justin Bieber and Selena Gomez have no contact with each other.
After Selena Gomez’s Kidney Transplant
Now that Selena has recovered from her kidney transplant, she is starting to be visible in the public eye again.
She had her first public appearance with her current Canadian boyfriend, Abel Makkonen Tesfaye a.k.a. The Weeknd, last September 8 at the Harper’s Bazaar Icons Party in New York.
She has also been spotted shooting for an unnamed Woody Allen film this week.
Would Selena Gomez tour again? The question may pop in some of her fans’ minds. Maybe not anytime soon.
But most fans don’t really care. They are just happy that Selena has a new lease on life and seem to be happier with her new kidney, courtesy of her BFF Francia Raisa.