While speaking during a segment for “Dancing with the Stars” Monday, actor Fankie Muniz revealed his struggle with memory loss.
People reported that the week’s theme for the celebrity dancing competition show was “The Most Memorable Year.” For Muniz, however, his past health issues may have contributed to his long-term memory loss.
In a pre-taped segment before Muniz’s quickstep with partner Witney Carson, Muniz said he can’t remember most things in his life, including starring on the comedy “Malcolm in the Middle” from 2000 to 2006, Entertainment Weekly reported.
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“It makes me a little sad,” Muniz said in the segment. “Things pop back into my mind (that) I should have remembered.”
Muniz said on the show he wasn’t sure about how his memory loss began.
“I have had nine concussions and I’ve had a fair amount of mini-strokes,” he said. “I’m not saying those things correlate exactly to the reason why my memory’s not great.”
In 2012, Muniz had his first mini-stroke, or transient ischemic attack, and blood supply temporarily cut off from his brain. He thinks he’s had about 15 of them at varying points and of varying lengths. None have had lasting effects, People reported.
“It’s something that I never really wanted to talk about, because I’m just me and this is my life,” he told People. “But we were talking about ‘Malcolm’ and how it started, and I don’t really have memories of being on the show.”
“Over the past 10 years, my mom will bring up things like trips we went on or big events and they are new stories to me,” he told People. “I don’t know what the cause of it is. It’s not something I looked into, I just thought it was how my brain is, so I thought it was normal. I didn’t know I should remember going to the Emmys when I was younger.”
Muniz told People he hasn’t seen doctors about the memory loss.
“I’m not a doctor person,” he said. “Every time I go to the doctors they just tell me I’m crazy.”
Bryan Cranston, who played Muniz’s father on “Malcolm,” said in the segment that his former costar didn’t need to worry about remembering old times.
“I told him not to worry about what you remember and what you don’t remember,” said Cranston, 61. “They’re still your experiences. That will be my job. I will tell him, ‘Remember this? Remember that from ‘Malcolm’? What a life for you!’”
With the support of his girfriend, Page Price, Muniz has been able to track experiences in a journal.
“She’s amazing. She literally writes because I get sad at the thought of losing the memories,” Muniz said. “So she writes in a journal that I can look at every day and it’s really cool, because it has amazing detail. ... She’s awesome. She’s very supportive. I hope we have a lot more memories (together).”
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