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Martine Ho Shares Her Struggle With Ramsay Hunt Syndrome, Which Caused Facial Paralysis

The morning before her C-section, the left side of her face was paralyzed.
Martine Ho's Ramsay Hunt Syndrome
PHOTO: (LEFT TO RIGHT) INSTAGRAM/MARTINE
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On October 9, Martine Ho addressed her "Internet fam" and revealed that she has been struggling with Ramsay Hunt Syndrome (aka adult chicken pox or shingles). This happened right before she and husband Cliff Ho welcomed their baby daughter, Penelope. Martine said, "The morning before my planned Caesarian birth to Penelope, I woke up with the left side [of my face] completely paralyzed. I was brushing my teeth and noticed the water just spilling out and that I was unable to blink. I thought I might be having a stroke actually."

Martine Ho's Ramsay Hunt Syndrome
INSTAGRAM/MARTINE
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She rushed to the doctor and received her diagnosis.  

Martine Ho's Ramsay Hunt Syndrome
INSTAGRAM/MARTINE

Martine Ho's Ramsay Hunt Syndrome diagnosis

Martine explained, "When you have chicken pox as a kid, the virus can still live on in your nerves and come back to haunt you as an adult when your immune system is weakened (ie. during pregnancy or stressful times, which pretty summed up my 2020). In my case, the virus attacked my facial nerve causing the paralysis."

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Martine Ho's Ramsay Hunt Syndrome
INSTAGRAM/MARTINE

Unfortunately, Martine has experienced a more serious case of Ramsay Hunt Syndrome, resulting in severe nerve damage.

Martine Ho's Ramsay Hunt Syndrome
INSTAGRAM/MARTINE
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This means she will "never be able to smile the same [way] again or have the same facial mobility."

Martine Ho's Ramsay Hunt Syndrome
INSTAGRAM/MARTINE

The new mom decided to talk about her condition because she didn't want to feel ashamed about what she's going through. 

Martine Ho's Ramsay Hunt Syndrome
INSTAGRAM/MARTINE
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Martine Ho's Ramsay Hunt Syndrome
INSTAGRAM/MARTINE

Since posting her Instagram Stories, fans have showered Martine with so much love. In a new post, she thanked them for their support: "New deeper meaning to smiling on the inside. No words to express the gratitude I have for my community here. Your messages have given me the strength and comfort I needed to to share my journey with facial paralysis. Sending everyone my deepest love and warmest virtual hugs right back xo."

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