Andrew Dice Clay's Bell's Palsy Diagnosis Explained

Some people might know him from his stand-up. Others might recognize him from "Entourage" or "A Star is Born". Wherever you know him from, you'd have a hard time missing a presence like Andrew Dice Clay. The man has been working in film and comedy since 1981, appearing in everything from live shows to radio programs to big budget movies. It's a body of work he intends to add to despite his recent diagnosis of Bell's palsy.

Page Six reports that the comedian woke up a few weeks ago to find his face drooping slightly. Other symptoms soon arose, leading to his diagnosis of Bell's palsy. The star was then told that the condition should clear up in a few weeks. But as fans catch wind of the news, many are left wondering what exactly Bell's palsy is and how it might affect Clay's upcoming tour dates, not to mention the comedian himself.

What is Bell's palsy?

The National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke defines Bell's palsy as the temporary paralysis or weakness of one side of the face. Rare cases affect both sides of the face but most often it is one side or the other. The condition is caused by a malfunction of one cranial nerve VII, one of twelve that all people have. This nerve controls movements of the eyelid like blinking and winking. It also controls certain expressions like smiles and the transmission of tastes from the tongue to the brain. It also affects more subtle things like the amount we salivate, tear production, and the muscles that affect a small bone in the middle ear.

The condition usually clears up after a few weeks, though nobody knows what causes the nerve to malfunction in the first place. Some patients may receive steroids to help speed the healing process but many doctors let the condition resolve itself without treatment. Full strength is usually regained in six months, though some people are left with long-term or permanent weakness.

The condition is most common in people 15 to 45 and can be connected to conditions like pregnancy, diabetes, and hypertension among others. Clay was a little older than the usual age range at 63, but he's not letting that slow him down. Page Six reports he intends to continue with his planned tour dates and fans can soon see him in "Pam and Tommy," also starring Sebastian Stan.