The Pogues’ Shane MacGowan gives a health update during New Year’s message

Virgin Radio

3 Jan 2023, 07:35

(L-R) Shane MacGowan on stage, and Shane in his Twitter video message

Credit: Getty / Twitter (@ShaneMacgowan)

The Pogues’ frontman Shane MacGowan has shared a new health update with fans in a New Year’s message shared to social media. 

The musician was admitted to hospital in December after suffering from an unknown illness, and was released a few weeks later, in time for Christmas and to celebrate his birthday.

Shane’s wife, Victoria Mary Clarke, has been keeping fans apprised of Shane’s health since the hospital visit, and now, the singer himself has shared a video confirming his diagnosis, and wishing fans a happy 2023. 

On New Year’s Eve, Shane uploaded the clip to his Twitter page, in which he said: “Hello fans, I’m sitting here suffering from encephalitis, the light is killing me but I wanted to wish you a Happy New Year and Happy Christmas and many more of them to all of you in the world. Happy Christmas and Happy New Year, love Shane.”

According to the NHS, encephalitis is an uncommon but serious condition in which the brain becomes inflamed, and symptoms include difficulty speaking, confusion or disorientation and weakness or loss of movement in the body. 

Earlier in December, wife Victoria also confirmed the rocker had suffered from shingles, which had spread to his eye, and led to her calling for help. 

In an interview with Sunday Independent, she said: “I noticed it on his face. His eye was getting red and began to close over. I called the doctor and the doctor said it was very dangerous so we had to get him to the hospital straight away.

“The hospital explained to me that shingles can go into your brain and that’s what happened to Shane so now they want to keep him in on a drip for two week.”

The last few years haven’t been easy for Shane, who has faced several health difficulties. 

Back in 2016, he broke his pelvis after a fall, and then broke his knee in another accident. He currently uses a wheelchair, and has a carer at his home in Dublin. 

Victoria opened up about his health issues to The Guardian back in April, and admitted: “I definitely want to help him to stay alive for as long as possible.

When asked if she’s ever not wanted to live, the writer responded: “Yes, quite a lot of the time. But Shane never seems to want not to live. That’s what’s weird.”

Shane is best known for leading The Pogues, which he did from 1982 until 1991. He went on to form The Popes after leaving the band, but returned to revive The Pogues in 2001. They split again in 2014.