Robert De Niro’s baby mother Tiffany Chen has revealed that she was diagnosed with Bell’s palsy after giving birth in April. The baby girl welcomed by the pair was De Niro’s seventh child. Chen told Gayle King during “CBS Mornings” that the symptoms of the neurological disease started almost immediately following the delivery of her baby, Gia Virginia Chen De Niro.
Bell’s palsy is a neurological disorder which causes severe muscle weakness or facial paralysis. The condition usually affects one side of the face. It can be temporary and tends to resolve itself or with some treatment, according to the Mayo Clinic.
The symptoms worsened for Chen to the point where she readmitted herself to the hospital following her delivery. “I lost all facial function the minute I got into the hospital. And the one thing that threw everybody off was that it was perfectly symmetrical how everything had fallen and how everything wasn’t working,” she said.
However Chen explained that she was more worried about the impact her disease might have on her newborn. “I couldn’t give [Gia] kisses. That’s what made me self-conscious,” Chen said, later adding, “The thing I did worry about was, ‘What if it didn’t get better?’ Was my kid going to get made fun of for having a weird-looking mom? That’s the only time, like, vanity comes into play. It’s how it affects the child.”
This news comes just as more information emerges about the tragic passing of De Niro’s grandson. According to the AP, Sofia Haley Marks, 20, has been arrested in connection to the sale of fentanyl-laced pills suspected to be the cause of death for De Niro’s late grandson.