This isn’t enough to celebrate just yet, but it’s good news to be hearing about Shin Dong-wook again, even if all mentions of comebacks are vague and off in the distant future. I’d worried he might never return to acting, so it’s nice to get an update on his situation.
The Soulmate and Wish Upon a Star actor has been out of the public eye since 2011, when he was discharged early from military service upon diagnosis of a rare condition, CPRS (Complex Regional Pain Syndrome). It’s a chronic disease that causes extreme bouts of pain without a known cause or cure, which certainly sounds dire. (The article explains the pain caused by CPRS as registering a 9 or 10 on a 10-point scale, where childbirth ranks a 7 and cutting off a finger is an 8. I have no idea how scientifically accurate that scale is, but suffice to say it’s a serious disease.)
When Shin initially disclosed the news, he had said his health should be manageable for daily life, but given that bouts can arise suddenly and severely, it wasn’t clear whether he’d be back working on dramas anytime soon (or ever), given their famously grueling schedules and working conditions.
An entertainment news show recently reported an update after speaking with Shin Dong-wook’s reps, who confirmed that he has been receiving treatment for the disease. They’ve refrained from making public updates about his health to respect his privacy and psychological well-being, explaining that while he has no current plans for a comeback, he does intend to resume working if and when his physical condition allows.
Shin did write a message on his fan cafe earlier this year, expressing his hopes to make his comeback.
Via OBS News
- Shin Dong-wook contracts rare illness, discharged from army
- Army enlistment day for Shin Dong-wook
- Shin Dong-wook’s fan club treats drama staff to holiday meal
- Wish Upon a Star: Episodes 1-2
- Shin Dong-wook tracks down your ex-boyfriend
- War of Money: Episodes 1-2
- MBC comedy-drama Soulmate