Amy Winehouse, who really might die and has been hospitalized for testing after collapsing in London last week, is suffering the early stages of emphysema, her father, Mitch, says - but she is "responding brilliantly to treatment."
The troubled singer, 24, was rushed to the hospital June 16 after she fainted in her home. She has been undergoing tests that ruled out tuberculosis, but her father said over the weekend that Amy has serious health problems.
So bad is her lung capacity that she might be confined to a wheelchair.
"When we got to the hospital a room was ready," Mitch Winehouse told The Mirror (UK). "Several doctors came in to make sure she didn't need any emergency treatment. They put her on a drip straight away because she was dehydrated. She said, 'Don't worry about me, dad. I know I've got to stop taking drugs.'"
Amy Winehouse had been awake for 48 hours before going to the hospital. After she was admitted, she "curled up in bed" and slept for three straight days.
Speaking on BBC Radio 1 Monday, the elder Winehouse clarified and amplified some of his earlier remarks about the Grammy winner's condition, stating:
"Amy really hasn't got emphysema. There's traces of emphysema. Obviously, if she doesn't quit smoking it's gonna get worse, as with everybody else.""She's smothered in nicotine patches. She's responding brilliantly. She's actually flourishing," he added. "She really wants to do her gigs at the weekend, and with doctors' permission - and they've given that - she's gonna perform."
Dr. Keith Prowse, chairman of the British Lung Foundation, said Amy Winehouse is very young to have developed the condition.
"Emphysema is extremely common but it generally affects middle-aged and elderly people," said Prowse, the British Press Association reports.
"Smoking is the commonest cause, and it's basically destruction of the lungs so that oxygen cannot get into them."