Tyler James Williams

'Abbott Elementary' Star Tyler James Williams Reveals He Almost Died Battling Crohn's Disease

Home / News / 'Abbott Elementary' Star Tyler James Williams Reveals He Almost Died Battling Crohn's Disease

By Favour Adegoke on January 19, 2023 at 12:00 AM EST

Golden Globe winner Tyler James Williams is reflecting on almost losing his life after being diagnosed with Crohn's Disease.

The actor shared that he was informed that he had the ailment after visiting a gastroenterologist due to excruciating stomach discomfort and being unable to keep fluids or food down.

After undergoing surgery to help deal with the pain, Williams suffered complications and was forced to only take food for months using an IV connected to his veins.

He ultimately changed his lifestyle to a healthier one following the health scare and only sought to star in "purpose-driven roles."

Read on to learn more.

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'I Was Really Pushing My Body To The Limit'

Tyler James Williams

In an interview with Men's Health, Williams revealed the series of events that led to him finding out that he had Crohn's Disease.

He explained that everything began after he had invested a lot of time in the gym to develop his muscles. The actor claimed that instead of doing things step by step, he decided to take a radical approach and force-feed himself while also adhering to other demanding regimens.

As a result of his rigorous process, he suffered from excruciating stomach discomfort and was unable to retain any food, regardless of its form.

"I was really pushing my body to the limit," Williams recalled, adding that at the time, his body weight had hit the 130-pound mark, per Us Weekly.

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Sometime in December 2017, his body "just crashed" and "shut down," forcing the actor to see a gastroenterologist in New York City.

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Tyler James Williams Had Multiple Surgeries

Tyler James Williams

Williams' visit to the hospital revealed that he had an inflammatory bowel ailment known as Crohn's disease. This came after multiple tests confirmed that he had inflamed bowels that were clogged with scar tissue.

Crohn's disease has no medical cure at the moment and could lead to complications and, ultimately, death if the symptoms are not managed.

In Williams' case, he was hit with the first complication following an urgent operation in which six inches of his lower intestine were removed. His body went into septic shock because his intestines were unable to heal, which led to more surgeries.

Williams found himself thinking about his life and wondering whether he was about to breathe his last in that dire moment.

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He recalled, per the Us Weekly, "The last thought I had was, 'This could be it. If this is it, I'm not happy. I worked a lot. I did a lot of things. I didn't enjoy any of this. This can't be it."

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Tyler James Williams Shares Touching Lesson

Tyler James Williams

Fortunately, he got better, but not without going through an uncomfortable recovery process.

For months, the "Everybody Hates Chris" star could only feed using an intravenous feeding system that took nutrients into his body through his vein.

As a side effect, his body weight dropped to 105 pounds, with all his previous gains down the drain.

The experience spurred Williams to "learn how to stop making a dramatic change happen really quickly" and to improve his "relationship with his body."

He further noted, per Us Weekly, "The important thing for me, and those like me, to remember is that longevity is a big part of the game. If you can't [stay strong] and be healthy, there really is no point."

Tyler James Williams On His 'Abbott Elementary' Character

80th Annual Golden Globe Awards - Press Room- Abbott Elementary Cast

Beyond changing his lifestyle to a healthier one, exclusive of red meat and coffee, the singer also sought more "purpose-driven" roles to properly utilize his second chance at life.

One such role is his character Gregory Eddie in the award-winning series "Abbott Elementary."

In his interview, Williams describes the character as someone who "wants to be in this position of power 'cause he feels like that's what he needs to be successful but then finds out that that's not his life."

He then shared that he and Eddie shared the same "very journey" to explain why he could relate to the character.

Unsurprisingly, Williams' performance has already garnered him critical acclaim with his recent Golden Globe win for Best supporting actor in a TV series.

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