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Britney Spear’s ex K-Fed wants child support increase amid star’s Vegas success

After seeing how successful her four-year Las Vegas residency has been, Britney Spears’ ex-husband Kevin Federline is asking for an increase in child support.

>> Read more trending news 

Federline’s attorney reportedly sent the pop singer a letter recently indicating that he would like to renegotiate the $20,000 monthly payment he currently receives from her for their two sons, Preston, 12, and Jayden, 11.

Married from 2004 to 2007, the former couple decided on that amount after Spears lost sole physical and legal custody over the children and was placed in a still-ongoing conservatorship under the care of her father during their highly-publicized 2008 divorce. However, now that her residency has grossed over $137 million in four short years, Federline is looking to cash in, believing the success of her show was “in part because the boys have been in her life.”

>> RelatedChuck Norris gives up his movie career to focus on the legal fight over his wife’s illness

“Kevin has always been supportive of Britney’s recovery and has always recognized what a great mother she has been,” a source familiar with the situation told US Weekly. “Britney’s entire world are the boys, period. She just lights up when she is with them.”

However, Federline additionally feels he’s entitled to an increase in child support in order to “recognize the sacrifices he has made because he has gone above and beyond what most people would do in this situation.”

Both Spears and Federline are reportedly hoping to reach an agreement outside of court, with the insider adding, “Britney won’t be involved with any of the legal discussions regarding the increase request. She will let her dad, Jamie, and the lawyers hash it out. However, Jamie isn’t just going to fork over what he would consider an outrageous demand.”

Actress Nanette Fabray, Tony, Emmy-winning star of stage and screen, dead at 97

Award-winning actress and comedian Nanette Fabray has died at the age of 97, Variety reported Friday.

Fabray was known for her charm, energetic exuberance and multi-talented performances in musical theatre in the 1940’s, as well as movies and TV in the 1950’s.

>> Read more trending news 

She won a Tony Award for her performance in the Broadway musical “Love Life” in 1949, according to her biography, and three Emmy Awards in the mid-1950s for her work on Sid Caesar’s television show “Caesar’s Hour.”

She co-starred with Fred Astaire and Cyd Charisse in the 1953 movie “Band Wagon” and played Grandma Katherine Romano on the hit show “One Day at a Time” from 1979 to 1984, among many other roles over her long career.

She was also a longtime advocate for the deaf after overcoming a serious hearing problem of her own. She was awarded the President’s Distinguished Service Award and the Eleanor Roosevelt Humanitarian Award for her long efforts on behalf of the hearing impaired.

Fabray’s son, Dr. Jamie MacDougall, according to The New York Times, confirmed she died at her home in Palos Verdes, California on Thursday.

Olympian Gus Kenworthy rescues puppy from Korean dog meat farm

After rescuing dogs at the 2014 Sochi Winter Olympics, freestyle skier Gus Kenworthy has rescued another puppy.

People reported that Kenworthy announced he and his boyfriend, actor Matthew Wilkas, rescued a puppy named Beemo. The Associated Press reported that the two visited visited a dog farm in Siheung, South Korea, Friday.

>> Read more trending news 

“This morning Matt and I had a heart-wrenching visited to one of the 17,000 dog farms here in South Korea,” Kenworthy said in an Instagram post. “Across the country there are 2.5 million dogs being raised for food in some of the most disturbing conditions imaginable. Yes, there is an argument to be made that eating dogs is a part of Korean culture. And, while don’t personally agree with it, I do agree that it’s not my place to impose western ideals on the people here.”

Kenworthy said that the farm he and Wilkas visited was being permanently closed due to the work of the Humane Society International and a farmer’s cooperation. The 87 dogs, some which are expecting litters of puppies, at the farm are being taken to North America, according to The AP.

Related: 2018 Winter Olympics: Who is Gus Kenworthy?

Beemo is among those dogs.

“I adopted the sweet baby in the first pic (we named her Beemo) and she'll be coming to the US to live with me as soon as she's through with her vaccinations in a short couple of weeks,” Kenworthy wrote. “I cannot wait to give her the best life possible!”

At the Sochi games, Kenworthy rescued a mother dog and three puppies. Although one puppy did not survive, the mother, Mamuchka, lives with Kentworthy’s mother in Telluride, Colorado, and Mishka and Jake live with Kentworthy’s ex-boyfriend, Robin Macdonald, in Vancouver.

“I’m hoping to use this visit as an opportunity to raise awareness to the inhumanity of the dog meat trade here in Korea and the plight of dogs everywhere, including back home in the U.S., where millions of dogs are in need of loving homes,” Kenworthy said.

The AP reported that the dogs on the farm will be vaccinated and quarantined on the farm until March.

Jennifer Lopez celebrates twins Max and Emme’s 10th birthday

Jennifer Lopez and Marc Anthony’s twins are growing up so fast!

Max and Emme celebrated their 10th birthday on Feb. 22, and Lopez was right there to celebrate with her kids, sharing multiple posts on Instagram. 

>> Read more trending news 

Sharing a video of her kids’ -- whom she affectionately calls her coconuts -- cutest moments throughout the years, Lopez wrote, “It's hard to get my head around the fact that it's been 10 years since these two forces of nature came into my world and changed my life forever... you healed my soul and rejuvenated my existence... you taught me about love and life and myself in a way I never imagined... and I am forever in love with those beautiful faces...”

The proud mother shared two other tributes to her children in their own posts on Instagram with individual heartfelt messages.

“Max you are my heart, my love and my light,” Lopez wrote to her son. “You brighten up every day for me with your kindness and caring, your love and awareness… your energy is unmatched, your sense of humor makes everyone around you laugh, and I marvel at your depth of understanding of people and the world… my old soul, my beautiful boy, Happy 10th Birthday I know you are getting so big but you will always be my precious coconut.”

For her daughter, Lopez celebrated Emme’s “independence and strength,” writing, “Emme you are my soul, my inner child personified the most joyful deep and sensitive human being I have ever met…and I adore everything about you…your artistry, your independence, your strength and your sensitive spirit… Happy 10th Birthday my marshmallow princess…I know you’re growing up so much but you will always be my precious coconut.”

Proud dad Marc Anthony reposted his former wife’s video tribute to Max and Emme on his Instagram page Feb. 22.

According to TMZ, Lopez ceebrated her twin’s milestone birthday Thursday at the Sugar Factory in Las Vegas. From 5 p.m. - 9 p.m., 30 guests celebrated with custom cakes for each child. 

Michael B. Jordan responds to criticism about him living with his parents

Michael B. Jordan had a quick response for one person on Twitter who criticized his living arrangement.

On a Feb. 6 appearance on “The Ellen DeGeneres Show,” Jordan said he still lives with his parents.

>> Read more trending news 

“I love my parents, but we have a roommate relationship right now, which is interesting,” Jordan, 31, said. “You get home-cooked meals, but then you also have random trips to the kitchen in the middle of the night. Just the random run-ins that just might be a little uncomfortable from time to time.”

For Jordan, that included his mother seeing him “sometimes shirtless, maybe a little naked.”

Related: Michael B. Jordan reveals what he had to give up for ‘Black Panther’

Mashable reported that the “Black Panther” star replied to a Twitter user who took issue with him living with his parents and his interest in anime, the latter of which has been documented by Nerdist.

“Michael B. Jordan is a 5’9” adult man that loves anime and lives with his parents,” the Twitter user named Chris wrote. “Y’all told me all of those things were unacceptable though.”

“First of all, I’m 6 feet and they live with ME, put some respeck on my name,” Jordan replied.

Jordan also name-dropped some popular anime characters: Goku, from “Dragonball Z,” and Natuto, of the anime series of the same name.

Ryan Reynolds shuts down troll who criticized Make-A-Wish kids visiting ‘Deadpool’ set

Ryan Reynolds isn’t just a charming actor. He’s also a renowned social media goofball who is really great at shutting down trolls

On Monday, the 41-year-old movie star took to Instagram to share a few photographs of himself — in character as the R-rated mercenary Deadpool — hanging out with some children with life-threatening illnesses on the set of the upcoming sequel “Deadpool 2.” 

>> Read more trending news 

“Deadpool kicked cancer ... but these kids do it for real every day,” Reynolds captioned the images.

“These foundations make dreams come true for a lot of super-brave kids. They also make dreams come true for parents, who just wanna see their kid smile. HUGE thanks to our Prop Master, Dan Sissons, for making sure every kid left with his/her own sword. (Bamboo versions. Not stabby-stabby versions.)”

Most of the comments on the post were positive and inspiring, with many people commending Reynolds for his altruism, but one comment in particular was negative.

“Guys Deadpool is R rated movie and those kids are watching it… I think something is wrong here…,” a comment on the post said.

Reynolds wasn’t about to let that slide.

“Yup. Deadpool is Rated R. If my kid went through a fraction of the (expletive) these kids deal with daily, I think they can watch whatever they like,” Reynolds replied. “That’s just my .02 cents.”

Make-A-Wish America commented a message of gratitude on the actor’s post. 

“You. Are. Awesome. Thank you so much for being an amazing wish granter and supporter of our mission,” the comment said.

“Deadpool 2” will be in theaters May 18.

Amy Poehler, ‘Parks and Rec’ cast ask NRA to take down Leslie Knope tweet

The National Rifle Association has gone under the scope of national scrutiny again after last week’s deadly mass shooting at a Florida high school. The organization’s latest offense came after it decided to tweet a GIF from the NBC show “Parks and Recreation” on Wednesday night.

>> Read more trending news 

The group sought to thank spokesperson Dana Loesch for her presence at a CNN town hall with the GIF. The GIF features the show’s main character, Leslie Knope, who was portrayed by comedian and actress Amy Poehler for seven seasons.

Show creator Michael Shur addressed the GIF on Twitter Thursday morning.

“Hi, please take this down. I would prefer you not use a GIF from a show I worked on to promote your pro-slaughter agenda,” he tweeted.

Shur also shared a message from Poehler.

“Also, Amy isn’t on twitter, but she texted me a message: ‘Can you tweet the NRA for me and tell them I said (expletive) off?'”

Other actors on the show joined in, including Nick Offerman, who played Ron Swanson on the show.

“Our good-hearted show and especially our Leslie Knope represent the opposite of your pro-slaughter agenda - take it down,” Offerman tweeted along with an explicit remark.

Adam Scott, who played Ben Wyatt, and Aubrey Plaza, who played April Ludgate, also responded on Twitter.“Hey NRA please stay the (expletive) away form Lesilie Knope,” Scott tweeted.

Plaza responded to Offerman’s tweet with a GIF of her character from the series.

While Poehler’s Leslie Knope largely remained accepting of several different political ideologies, it was no secret that Pohler leaned toward the Democratic Party at the time of the 2016 presidential election.

As of the writing of this article, the tweet shows no signs of being removed anytime soon.

67-year-old Jane Seymour poses for ‘Playboy,’ ‘I feel much sexier now’ 

Elegant actress Jane Seymour is about to grace the pages of “Playboy” magazine at 67-years-old.

>> Read more trending news 

The former Bond girl took to social media Wednesday to share a modest photograph from her upcoming spread in the iconic men’s magazine.

“I’m thrilled to finally share this with you! I was recently photographed and interviewed in my home by Playboy,” Seymour captioned the image on Instagram.

“I open up about my career, my family, feeling better-than-ever at 67 and so much more,” she wrote.

This is the “Dr. Quinn, Medicine Woman” star’s third spread in “Playboy.”

The legendary actress told the magazine that her age hasn’t diminished her confidence.

“I feel much sexier now than I ever did when I was younger” she said.

“Then I was like, ‘Oh gosh, I’m supposed to be sexy. What is that?!’ There’s an enormous freedom in having lived as long as I have,” she added. “Like my father used to say, I’m comfortable in my own skin.”

And there’s no doubt that she’s all natural.

“I haven’t done any surgeries or injections or anything. I haven’t done any of it,” she explained.

>> Related: Tennis champ Serena Williams reveals she ‘almost died’ in childbirth

“So I still look like ‘me.’ Everyday I’m kind of tempted, but then I look at people I know and I don’t [recognize] them. I’m authentically being me. That’s important to me.”

Snap Inc.’s stock falls after Kylie Jenner tweet about Snapchat redesign

Kylie Jenner may be one of many Snapchat users who isn’t happy about the app’s redesign.

The 20-year-old new mom asked her followers on Tuesday if anyone else no longer uses the app.

>> Read more trending news 

“So does anyone else not open Snapchat anymore? Or is it just me,” she wrote. “Ugh this is so sad.”

Bloomberg reported that the timing of the tweet may have caused a drop in stock for Snap Inc., the company that owns Snapchat.

“Shares sank as much as 7.2 percent Thursday, wiping out $1.3 billion in market value, on the heels of a tweet from Kylie Jenner,” the publication said.

According to a Wednesday tweet from Reuters, the drop in Snap’s stock adds up to about $1.5 billion lost in market value.

Related: ‘Change it back’: Snapchat users not happy about latest update

Ten minutes after the first tweet, Jenner said she still has love for the app.

“Still love you tho snap,” she tweeted. “My first love.”

Jenner, who welcomed her first child, daughter Stormi Webster, Feb. 1, may have not opened the app because she’s busy with her little one and boyfriend Travis Scott.

Related: Kylie Jenner gives birth to baby girl

“Still staring at her all day,” Jenner told a fan of her newborn. “She looks just like me when I was a baby.”

Report: Actress Rachel McAdams pregnant with first child

Congratulations are in order for actress Rachel McAdams, who is reportedly expecting her first child.

E! News, citing several unnamed sources, reported that the 39-year-old actress is pregnant.

>> Read more trending news 

In 2016, Us Weekly reported that the private star was seen holding hands with screenwriter Jamie Linden, which prompted speculation that they were dating.

McAdams has not commented on the report, but she has been vocal about becoming a mother in the past.

“Having a few (kids) would be great,” she told People in 2009. “My mom is a great inspiration to me. She’s a nurse and very nurturing and gentle. She lets me be who I am. Hopefully I can take on those qualities and be as great as her.”

Adams, who has a starring role in the movie “Game Night,” was not at the Los Angeles premiere of the movie Wednesday. According to E! News, the Canadian actress was last photographed in Toronto wearing a baggy jacket. 

Adam Levine and Behati Prinsloo share first picture of daughter Gio Grace 

The world has been introduced to a peek of Adam Levine and Behati Prinsloo’s new baby girl, Gio Grace.

The new mom of two shared the first photo of the baby on Instagram Feb. 21. She also confirmed her birthday and her name.

 >> Read more trending news 

“Gio Grace Levine 2/15/18,” Prinsloo wrote. “She’s got her dads toes.”

The couple welcomed their first child, daughter Dusty Rose, in September 2016. Shortly after announcing they were expecting a second child, Levine spoke with Ellen DeGeneres about his desire to have more children with his wife.

“I want a lot (of kids); I thrive in chaos,” Levine said at the time. “(Behati) was an only child, so she wants like 100 babies. I don’t know if I can do that. That’s a lot of babies.”

Quincy Jones apologizes for candid remarks in Vulture, GQ interviews

Quincy Jones is apologizing for the very frank remarks hes made in interviews with GQ and Vulture. 

According to the music legend, his six daughters pulled him aside after reading his comments with the publications and showed him the impact of his words.

>> Read more trending news 

Jones posted a lengthy statement apologizing for the stories on Twitter, according to The Hollywood Reporter.

“I am an imperfect human and I’m not afraid to say it,” Jones wrote. “And I’m sorry and I’m not afraid to say it.

“When you’ve been fortunate enough to have lived such a long and crazy life (and you’ve recently stopped drinking – three years ago!), certain details about specific events (which do NOT paint the full picture of my intentions nor experiences) come flooding back all at once, and even at 85, it’s apparent that ‘wordvomit’ and bad-mouthing is inexcusable.”

Related: 9 of the best quotes from Quincy Jones’ sweeping Vulture interview

Most of the people Jones spoke about in the sweeping Vulture interview -- Jimi Hendrix, Michael Jackson, Richard Pryor and Marlon Brando among them -- are dead, but Jones said he personally apologized to those he could.

“I’m sorry to anyone whom my words offended and I’m especially sorry to my friends who are still here with me and to those who aren’t,” he wrote.

In the GQ interview, published Jan. 29, Jones spoke about partying with Ray Charles and Frank Sinatra and criticized artists like Taylor Swift for not creating “great songs.”

Jones told Vulture The Beatles were poor musicians.  He also made explicit remarks about the sex lives of Pryor and Brando. The Vulture interview was published Feb. 7.

Jones wrote, “One of the hardest things about this situation is that this bad-mouthing has contradicted the very real messages I tried to relay about racism, inequality homophobia, poverty...you name it. And of course I don’t want that. 

“I have already reached out to my friends privately, but when you live a public life, you have a responsibility to be an example, and since I do lead a public life, I wanted to make a public apology.”

Read Jones’ full statement below.

Beyonce has nothing to do with new ‘Sweet Dreams’ remix

It’s been nearly 10 years since Beyonce released “Sweet Dreams,” the sixth single from 2008’s “I Am... Sasha Fierce,” but a remix of the song appeared on streaming services Wednesday.

>> Read more trending news 

Billboard reported that the new version, which appears on a 2018 album called “Sweet Dreams (Remixes),” has a more hip-hop sound than the electro-synth original. 

Beyonce herself had nothing to do with the release. Pitchfork reported that a representative for the singer confirmed it is not an official release.

The “Sweet Dreams” remix is on Tidal and Apple Music. A clip can be heard below.

McDonald’s Shamrock Shake is back with an app

McDonald’s Shamrock Shake is back at some locations this week. 

USA Today reported on Wednesday that the fast-food restaurant has brought back the popular minty treat

>> Read more trending news 

This year, there is no other flavor. In 2017, the restaurant had four Shamrock Shake flavors outside of the mint one: frappe, chocolate, hot chocolate and mocha. Instead, McDonald’s is offering a Shamrock Shake Finder app on iOS and Android so customers can locate the popular dessert.

“Fans simply need to download the app and from there, locate participating restaurants locations, swap Shamrock Shake-themed stickers and raise a shake with friends to toast St. Patrick’s Day,” McDonald’s said of the app in a Feb. 12 news release. “In addition to helping fans find the nearest Shamrock Shake, the app also features a brand new camera mode, featuring an augmented reality (AR) experience for iPhone X.”

The Shamrock Shake was introduced in 1970 and is typically only available for a limited amount of time, disappearing around St. Patrick's Day.

McDonald’s brings back Szechuan sauce to ‘fully make amends’

McDonald’s acknowledged Wednesday morning that it botched last fall’s release of a cult favorite menu item and vowed to get it right this time, starting Feb. 26.

>> Read more trending news 

“Last October, we truly meant well when we brought back a super-limited batch of Szechuan Sauce, but it quickly became apparent we did not make enough to meet the expectations of our fans,” McDonald’s said in a Thursday news release. “We did not anticipate the overnight crowds, the cross-state travel and the amazing curiosity, passion and energy fans showed.”

“Our super-limited batch, though well-intentioned, clearly wasn’t near enough to meet that demand. We disappointed fans and we are sorry. To fully make amends, we felt it was important to not only bring back much more sauce this time, but to also admit our mistakes, answer questions and give fans access to the story behind the story.”

Related: Fan-demanded Szechuan sauce returning to McDonald’s for one day

Last year, McDonald’s announced a “one-time only, limited-edition” run of the sauce, which was first released in 1998 as a promotional tie-in with the release of Disney’s animated movie “Mulan.” Twenty years later, the sauce has a fan following, which was referenced in an episode of “Rick and Morty.” The limited batch was at a few McDonald’s locations Oct. 7.

When the day came, however, fans were left rejected. In some restaurants, customers only got one packet of sauce and in others, no sauce was available despite posters promising otherwise. Some customers were so upset that police had to be called to locations.

Related: McDonald’s customers get saucy over failed ‘Rick and Morty’ promotion

McDonald’s officials say this time will be different.

“We have hundreds of packets (of the sauce) per restaurant to satisfy that sauce craving, so we encourage customers to get ‘em while we’ve got ‘em, whether they come into the restaurant, use Mobile Order & Pay, or order through McDelivery on Uber Eats where it’s available,” Debbie Wright, a franchise owner for Dayton, Ohio, McDonald’s, said in a release.

“We’ve worked every day since October to bring back much, much, more of the sauce our fans have been craving,” the company said. “And we’re excited to announce that starting Monday, Feb. 26, 20 million packets of Szechuan Sauce will be available across all U.S. McDonald’s restaurants with a qualifying purchase, while supplies last (which this time around, we hope is a while).”

The sauce will be available starting at lunchtime on Monday. To obtain it, a customer must buy an item on the menu.

More information on the return of the sauce can be found at McDonald’s We Want The Sauce website.

Steve Wilkos admits to lying about car crash, arrested on DUI charge

Steve Wilkos, a former security guard on “The Jerry Springer Show,” admitted that he lied about what really happened in a January car crash in Connecticut.

At the time of the Jan. 21 crash, Wilkos told TMZ he crashed after becoming distracted while reaching for his glasses. Just one month later, he confessed to the tabloid that he made the story up and admitted that the crash happened as a result of him driving under the influence of alcohol.

>> Read more trending news 

In January, Wilkos struck several poles and a tree before his vehicle rolled over. He was hospitalized and treated for minor injuries before being released. No other injuries were reported at the time.

People reported that Wilkos turned himself in on Wednesday after learning the Darien Police Department had a warrant out for his arrest. A news release from the Darien Police Department said a judge set bail for the TV talk show host at $1,500, which Wilkos posted that day and was released. The publication reports that his blood alcohol level at the time of the crash was .29 percent, which is over the legal limit.

Following the arrest, Wilkos issued a statement to TMZ.

“Over the course of my life, I have been struggling with bouts of depression and on the day of my accident, I had a complete lapse in judgment which resulted in me drinking and getting behind the wheel of my car,” the statement said. “This experience reinforces my commitment to get the professional help that I need and I have recently completed an intensive medically supervised program.”

Wilkos is set to appear in court March 5.

Jennifer Aniston and Justin Theroux's relationship had issues before marriage, report says

Jennifer Aniston and Justin Theroux may have been doomed from the start.

A new report in People claims that the celebrity couple’s relationship was riddled with issues even before they got married.

>> Jennifer Aniston, Justin Theroux announce separation

“Ever since they became serious, the living issue often made them bicker. It was always hard for Jen to understand why Justin didn’t like, or at least could learn to like L.A., when she was in L.A.,” a person "close to the pair" told the magazine.

Prior to their nuptials, the pair had a long-distance relationship because Aniston preferred to reside in Los Angeles, while Theroux wanted to remain in New York City.

“With Jen feeling so strongly about living in L.A. and disliking N.Y.C. so much, she wanted Justin to be happy and that’s why she agreed that he should spend so much time in N.Y.C.,” People's source claims.

>> On Rare.us: Jennifer Aniston and Justin Theroux’s separation stunned fans, but here’s why friends saw it coming

“One wonders why they got married in the first place,” the person added.

The couple stunned fans on Thursday with the announcement that they were separating.

Aniston and Theroux had been tabloid fodder since they began dating. The two met on the set of “Tropic Thunder” in 2008 and began dating in 2011. After several years of courtship and constant tabloid attention, Theroux and Aniston wed in 2015.

>> Read more trending news 

“We are two best friends who have decided to part ways as a couple, but look forward to continuing our cherished friendship,” the two said in a statement about the split.

“Jennifer and Justin fell in love hard and fast, and yet they were never really suited to one another. He was a New York hipster that loved the alternative lifestyle, and Jennifer was living a much more reclusive life when they first started to fall in love,” a source shared with E! News. “The initial chemistry between them made it easy for them to ignore their differences and incompatibility.”

Read more here.

Tennis champ Serena Williams reveals she ‘almost died’ after giving birth to first baby

Tennis champion Serena Williams revealed she “almost died after giving birth” to her first child, daughter Olympia, last fall, according to a column by Williams on CNN.com

>> Read more trending news 

Williams had a relatively easy birth Sept. 1, 2017, delivering her daughter by C-section, but two hours later, she was in a fight for her life that lasted six days, she wrote.

“It began with a pulmonary embolism, which is a condition in which one or more arteries in the lungs becomes blocked by a blood clot. Because of my medical history with this problem, I live in fear of this situation. So, when I fell short of breath, I didn't wait a second to alert the nurses,” Williams said.

She underwent three surgeries to deal with the health crisis and credited her medical team for her survival.

“When I finally made it home to my family, I had to spend the first six weeks of motherhood in bed,” she wrote on CNN.com.

“I am so grateful I had access to such an incredible medical team of doctors and nurses at a hospital with state-of-the-art equipment. They knew exactly how to handle this complicated turn of events. If it weren't for their professional care, I wouldn't be here today.”

Williams knew about her health condition and was able to alert medical staffers that  something was wrong.

>> Related: That is Graves’ disease? Wendy Williams opens up about her condition

Unfortunately, many women don’t know their health risks. According to the Centers for Disease Prevention and Control, African-American women are three times more likely than others to die from complications in pregnancy or childbirth.

What is Graves’ disease? Wendy Williams opens up about her condition

Fans of the “Wendy Williams Show” will have to watch re-runs for nearly a month, because the media maven is taking a three-week hiatus to treat her Graves’ disease

>> Read more trending news 

She made the announcement on air Wednesday, revealing that her doctor is requiring her to take a break from work to “get her levels and medication in sync,” a show representative told People

>> Related: Wendy Williams announces 3-week hiatus due to Graves' disease

“Wendy is a true champion and has never missed a day of work. But her health and well-being must be put before all else,” the spokesperson said in the statement. “Wendy has been openly dealing with her Graves’ disease for many years, in addition to hyperthyroidism...A live show was produced today so that Wendy could speak directly to her fans and explain her condition.”

Learning about the illness for the first time? Here’s what you should know. 

What is Graves’ disease?

It’s an immune system disorder that is caused by the overproduction of the thyroid hormones, according to the Mayo Clinic. In healthy adults, the thyroid function is regulated by a hormone released by the pituitary gland, which is located at the base of the brain. For those with Graves’ disease, a thyrotropin receptor antibody takes on this role, overriding the work of the pituitary gland and causing overproduction of the thyroid hormones. 

What are the symptoms?

Common signs include anxiety, irritability, tremor of the hands, weight loss, heat sensitivity, thyroid gland enlargement and rapid heartbeat. 

>> Related: Wendy Williams announces 3-week hiatus due to Graves' disease

Patients also experience Graves’ ophthalmopathy, where inflammation affects the muscles and tissues around eyes. The condition can cause bulging eyes, light sensitivity, double vision or even vision loss. 

Some also have Graves’ dermopathy, which is the reddening and thickening of the skin, particularly on the shins and tops of the feet. 

>> Related: Wendy Williams cancels talk show for the week due to flu 

How is it diagnosed?

Doctors generally conduct a physical exam to check the size of the thyroid. They also order blood samples to determine the levels of the thyroid-stimulating hormone, which is usually lower for those with Graves’.

Physicians also administer ultrasounds and imaging tests to view images of the thryroid, eyes, and iodine uptake patterns. Iodine is needed to produce thyroid hormones.

How is it treated?

Some have radioactive iodine therapy, where patients take radioactive iodine by mouth. The iodine seeps into the thyroid cells and the radioactivity gradually destoys the overactive ones. 

>> Related: Watch: Wendy Williams faints on live TV

Patients often are prescribed anti-thyroid medications, which can limit the thyroid’s ability to produce hormones. Beta blockers are also available. While they don’t stop the production of thyroid hormones, they do block some of the Graves’ disease symptoms. 

Who is affected?

It affects 1 in 200 people, according to the U.S. National Library of Medicine. Women are more likely to be diagnosed, and people younger than age 40 generally develop it. 

Rappers Missy Elliott and Rapsody as well as former president George H. W. Bush also have Graves’ disease. 

DirecTV to raise NFL Sunday Ticket prices, angering fans 

DirecTV will increase the price of its NFL Sunday Ticket package by about 4 percent for the 2018 season.

The Tuesday announcement comes after DirecTV increased the price of the NFL Sunday Ticket basic package last year by 9.3 percent and the larger package by 5 percent.

>> Read more trending news 

The basic package for 2018 will be priced at $293.94, increasing from $281.94 last year, according to the DirecTV website. The larger package that includes the Red Zone Channel costs $395.94, up 4.5 percent from 2017, according to USA TODAY.

Here’s what NFL fans had to say about the increase:

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