“It was touch and go… I”m lucky to be alive”: Emotional George Michael thanks doctors for saving his life after battling pneumonia
George Michael has issued a statement about his health today, reassuring fans he is on the road to recovery and thanking the hospital who treated him for saving his life.
The 48-year-old singer, who had been in Austria being treated for pneumonia, admitted he was still feeling weak following the illness, and said it had been “touch and go” whether he would survive.
Michael, who wore a scarf and sunglasses as he spoke to the press outside his home in Highgate, thanked everyone for their support.
“I”m lucky to be alive”: George Michael gave a press conference today reassuring fans that he is on the road to recovery after battling pneumonia
Announcement: Michael spoke against the backdrop of a Christmas tree outside his London home
Asked how he was feeling, Michael – who was supported throughout his ordeal by his boyfriend Fadi Fawaz, ex-partner Kenny Goss and 75-year-old father Kyriacos Panayiotou and older sisters Melanie and Yioda – said: “I feel amazing. I mean, I”m very weak but I feel amazing.
“I got streptagotta-something – it was a form of pneumonia and they basically spent three weeks keeping me alive.
I don”t want to take you through all of it because some of it I want to protect my family from, but it was by far the worst month of my life.
Emotional: Michael appeared to be struggling to hold back his tears at points during the press conference
Thankful: Michael also revealed he would be performing a special one-off concert to say thank you to the doctors at the AKH hospital in Vienna
“But I”m incredibly fortunate to be hereand incredibly fortunate to have picked up this bug where I did becauseapparently the hospital in Austria that they rushed me to was the best place in the world I could have been to deal with pneumonia.
“So I have to believe that somebody believes I”ve still got some work to do here.”
Asked what kept him going through his illness, Michael replied: “My family, and the thought of all the people I still have to play to.
Good spirits: Despite admitting he was “weak” the singer appeared relatively well as he spoke to waiting journalists
“The fact I”ve been so lucky and the fact that I still have plenty to live for – I have this amazing, amazinglife and if I wasn”t spiritual enough before the last 4 or 5 weeks thenI certainly am now.”
Michaelalso revealed he had had tracheotomy, a procedure which involves makingan incision in the trachea to open up the airways, during his time at the AKH clinic in Vienna, Austria.
He said:”I”d say it was touch and go for a couple of weeks. We played it down because I didn”t want to worry my fans too much – I”m sorry I couldn”t contact them before now but I wasn”t in any state to do so.”
Grateful: The singer clutches flowers from a well-wisher as he heads inside
Generous: A plate of empty mince pie wrappers is seen on the floor. Michael provided photographers and journalists with festive treats before the conference
Whenasked by journalists what his plan is now, Michael struggled to hold back tears as he replied: “The plan is to play to every person who had aticket to see me, and I would like to play one other show for the doctors in Austria who saved my life, because I have spent the last 10 days thanking people for saving my life – and that”s not something I have had to do before.
“I really from the bottom of my heart thank everyone for sending messages, and everyone in that ICU unit who saved my life.”
As he made his way back inside his home, Michael was asked if the illness had made him reassess things, to which he replied: “Yes, definitely – I”m a new man.”
Michael had to cancel all the remaining shows on his “Symphonica Tour” when he fell ill in November.
In late November, a statement released by Michael”s doctors revealed that the singer was “improving steadily.”
Preparing for a party Catering equipment and fridges were seen being delivered to the singer”s house today
Preparations: Crates of food were also delivered to the property this morning