‘Dance Moms’ Abby Lee Miller Called Chemotherapy ‘Poison’ and Almost Went Against Doctor’s Orders

Dance Moms is back, and it’s hard to believe after everything she’s been through, Abby Lee Miller is back in the saddle, too. We can’t forget that the infamous dance instructor who owns the Abby Lee Dance Company has been instructing (and yelling) at children while also making them superstars for years. And if there’s anything Miller’s known for aside from her dance company, it’s the struggles she’s been through over the past several years.

Miller was sentenced to just over a year of jail time for bankruptcy fraud and was released in March 2018, People reports. As soon as her jail stint was over, however, her health crisis was just beginning — and she almost went totally against her doctor’s orders. Here’s what went down that few Dance Moms fans know about.

Abby Lee Miller was diagnosed with Burkitt lymphoma back in April 2018

Abby Lee Miller
Abby Lee Miller | Rich Fury/Getty Images

Miller may have thought prison time would have been one of her biggest hurdles, but it was the health battle that followed that proved even more difficult for her. People explains Miller and her doctors thought she had a spinal infection in her back in April 2018, which was just a month after she was released. Scarily enough, it wasn’t a spinal infection she was experiencing at all. She was diagnosed with a form of non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma known as Burkitt lymphoma.

Today, Miller largely blames the prison system for aggravating her health issues and possibly leading her to her dire diagnosis. The star told People that the prison doctors chose to discontinue her diabetes medications while she was behind bars. As she told People, “I have so many doctors that have point blank said, ‘You should’ve been weaned off of that medication over a year.’ So to go off if it cold turkey, that’s what caused all of this. That’s what caused all of this. That what cause the blood in the lab reports to look so crazy.”

She almost didn’t finish her chemotherapy sessions

PopCulture notes Lifetime’s Dance Moms: The Return of Abby special offered some particularly interesting insight into Miller’s medical history. Overall, she had to undergo 10 rounds of chemotherapy and further explained on her Instagram that each round lasted six days — and that was just part of her process for getting rid of the lymphoma. And according to the Lifetime special, Miller was completely resistant to getting her last few rounds of chemo.

During the special, Miller learned that her doctors wanted to do a few last rounds of chemotherapy even when she thought she was finished. She told her friend, “I’m not putting any more poison in my body. I don’t need any more poison in my brain.” And when her friend asked Miller if she was willing to take the risk of the lymphoma returning by not doing the final three sessions, Miller admitted that she was “because dying is easier than this.” She then went on to say that she was ready to move forward with her life cancer-free or not, and she wasn’t “listening to anybody anymore about how to live my life.”

Thankfully, Miller went against her initial resistance and finished out the rounds of chemo anyway.

Today, she’s living cancer-free and hopes to walk again

Abby Lee Miller
Abby Lee Miller | BG015/Bauer-Griffin/GC Images

Despite all the struggles and pain, Miller is now living without cancer and is incredibly thankful for her life. As she told People, “The cancer is completely gone. I’m more than grateful. I’m thankful.” Now, we see she’s back to work helping children become dancing sensations — but she’s also working on getting back on her feet and out of the wheelchair. As she explained on her Instagram post, “I struggled thru months of physical therapy to learn to sit up again, to crawl and maybe with a miracle someday I’ll walk.”

It looks like there’s hope on the horizon for the star, too. During an interview with People Now, Miller discussed how she needs her right knee replaced — but after that, things will be looking up. “They are convinced that once I get this right knee taken care of, I will be walking again,” she said. “And I’ve had two different therapists say there is no doubt.”

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