Sheryl Crow casually mentioned that she has a brain tumor in an interview with Las Vegas Review-Journal posted earlier today, sending the internet into a tizzy worrying about the breast cancer survivor’s health. But she and her rep insist that it’s really not a big deal: Her tumor—called a meningioma—is benign (noncancerous), and she has no symptoms. In fact, her rep even says that lots of us have the same kind of brain tumor and don’t know it (because they’re such a minor health concern); this may be an exaggeration, but we are relieved to hear that the 50-year-old singer (and health nut) isn’t dealing with a serious health concern.
She told the Review:
I worried about my memory so much that I went and got an MRI. And I found out I have a brain tumor. And I was, like, ‘See? I knew there was something wrong.’
But she insists that it’s not a big deal:
I haven’t really talked about it. In November, I found out I have a brain tumor. But it’s benign, so I don’t have to worry about it. But it gives me a fit.
Her rep confirmed with E! Hollywood News that Crow indeed has a meningioma—the most common type of brain tumor, and one that ‘s often asymptomatic:
Half of us are walking around with [meningioma] but you don’t really know unless you happen to have an MRI.
This is probably an exaggeration; although 34% of primary brain tumors are meningiomas, they only occur in approximately 6 of every 100,000 people according to estimates. They occur most often in older women, but can occur in anyone at any age; most are benign, but there are rare cases of atypical, malignant meningiomas, too.
Crow has joked about her memory recently, telling a Florida audience in February, “I’m 50, what can I say? My brain’s gone to shit,” after forgetting some of her song lyrics. But her rep insists that it shouldn’t be cause for alarm:
[Crow] has no symptoms and everything is fine. It was a random mention during the [Vegas] interview. It was not meant to alarm anyone. She is doing great and is healthy and happy.
Between Crow’s inclination towards a healthy lifestyle (inspired, at least in part, by her battle against breast cancer) and her relatively sunny diagnosis, we’re hopeful that Crow has a lot of years to keep performing (and forgetting some of the words).