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‘We Don’t Have to Accept This’: Keke Palmer Reveals She Has Polycystic Ovary Syndrome, Suffers from Severe Acne

Keke Palmer recently opened up to her fans about a sensitive topic, giving insight into her personal health battles, and how she eventually overcame them through education and personal empowerment.

Palmer revealed in a candid Instagram post on Tuesday, Dec. 1, that she has Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome. The star used her platform to inform her followers and encourage others who also may be suffering from the disorder.


Palmer wrote an extensive caption that conveyed her long, arduous history with PCOS in a truthful manner.

“Hey you guys, for some of you this may be TMI, but for me my platform has always been used for things much greater than me,” she began. “Polycystic ovarian syndrome has been attacking me from the inside out my entire life and I had no idea.”

Polycystic ovarian syndrome is a common health problem caused by an imbalance of reproductive hormones, which creates problems in the ovaries. Between 5 and 10 percent of women between 15 and 44, have it, and the symptoms can include irregular menstrual cycle, excess body hair, acne, weight gain and thinning hair on the scalp, according to the Office on Women’s Health of the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services. Higher percentages are found in Black women, 8 percent, and Latinas, 13 percent, than among Caucasians, 4.8 percent, according to Black Doctor.Org.

For Palmer, acne in particular was distressing to manage, with the star including a makeup-free photo of herself as evidence of her acne. She mentioned that she employed a litany of remedies to counteract the problem, to no avail. She said it got to be “so bad that people in my field offered to pay for me to get it fixed. I tried EVERYTHING. I did Accutane TWICE. People say drink water, have a better diet, but I did all that. I ate all the “right” things; my blood tests were fine.”

However, Palmer said it was ultimately through “taking a personal look into my family that has a history of diabetes and obesity, to understand what was ACTUALLY happening with me.”

Palmer pointed out that some doctors are uncooperative “if you don’t “look the part” and “they may not think that’s your problem.” She recalled an instance where she came to a doctor crying over her condition, and all that was offered as a solution was a measles vaccine. Palmer indicated that it was through her own initiative that she was able to reach a place of understanding.

I’m posting this to say that it’s okay and we can help ourselves,” she wrote. “My skin has made me sad many nights but I do not give up on myself. I know this is not me and my body has been looking for help.”

She continued, “I do not have a medical degree but I did the research and took what I learned to a doctor and that led them to a proper diagnosis. I’m not saying trust web md for everything haha but what I am saying is no one can help us like we can help ourselves.”

To underscore her point, Palmer emphasized that the difficulties her family experienced with unscrupulous doctors pushed her to take the reins of her own health evolution.

“It’s only because of what my family sacrificed that allows me to even have the resources to share the information I’m sharing with you!” she said. “Their fight out of poverty gave me a better life and I just want to share what I learn.”

Palmer then clarified that despite her affliction, she was not going to let the acne take over her life and she encouraged her followers who might be facing the same.

“The least harmful thing PCOS can bring is acne,” she said. “To all the people struggling with this please know you’re not alone and that you are still so fucking fine! MY ACNE AINT NEVER STOPPED ME. But we don’t have accept this. Now I can really help KEKE! And I love her so it’s ON.”

Palmer closed out her testimonial, preserving a positive outlook that also sought to inspire those who have ever felt the same struggle.

“Pray for me on this journey and I will pray for you too. I’m not afraid to show myself to the world and you shouldn’t be either.”

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