Melanie Griffith Reveals She’s Been Battling Epilepsy

Melanie Griffith Women's Brain Health Initiative
Melanie Griffith attend VIP Conversation for Women's Brain Health Initiative Hosted by Sharon Stone at Gagosian Gallery on October 18, 2017 in Beverly Hills, California. Presley Ann/Patrick McMullan via Getty Images

Melanie Griffith has revealed she was diagnosed with epilepsy. The actress was on a panel for Women’s Brain Health Initiative on Wednesday, October 18, and opened up about dealing with the condition for over 20 years.

“They said it was an anomaly — they didn’t know what it was,” she said about her doctors, according to The Hollywood Reporter. “The last two [seizures] that I had I was on a boat outside of Cannes — on a big yacht — and I was extremely stressed out. Every seizure that I had was at a point when I was extremely stressed.”

Tamara Mellon, Crystal Lourd, Melanie Griffith; Sharon Stone, Paula Wagner, Pauline Maki and Lynn Posluns Women's Brain Health Initiative
Tamara Mellon, Crystal Lourd, Melanie Griffith; Sharon Stone, Paula Wagner, Pauline Maki and Lynn Posluns attend VIP Conversation for Women’s Brain Health Initiative Hosted by Sharon Stone at Gagosian Gallery on October 18, 2017 in Beverly Hills, California. Presley Ann/Patrick McMullan via Getty Images

“I had this major grand mal seizure, and they took me to the hospital in Cannes and then brought me back to the boat,” she recalled about her 2011 trip to the film festival. “And then I had another seizure and I went back. They did the EEG and started to look at it seriously. When I came back (to the United States), I was diagnosed with epilepsy and nobody had said to me over a period of 20 years, no one paid enough attention to even diagnose me.”

The Working Girl actress revealed her condition is currently stable and she hasn’t had a seizure in four years, with the help of medication and lessening her stress levels. “I got divorced, which is the real healer for me,” the Buffalo Girls star admitted, referring to her 2014 split from her husband of 18 years, Antonio Banderas. “I’m not stressed anymore. It’s been three years. As women, we take on family, we get the husband, we have the life, we have the children, we take care of the house, we also go to work, we can’t sleep at night because we are up with the kids. I don’t think I’ve slept for 35 years. I still don’t sleep; it’s totally f–ked up my sleep cycle.”

Melanie Griffith and Antonio Banderas attends the 64th Annual Tony Awards at Radio City Music Hall on June 13, 2010 in New York City
Melanie Griffith and Antonio Banderas attends the 64th Annual Tony Awards at Radio City Music Hall on June 13, 2010 in New York City. Kevin Mazur/WireImage

“They did all the tests on my brain. They couldn’t find the epilepsy; they couldn’t find anything wrong,” she added. “It’s pretty much that it was stress. My brain is f–ked up.”

The panel was put together to discuss the organization’s mission of combating women’s brain health disorders and they talked about women’s ability to have access to health care. “I thank God that I’m in a position where I was able to find out where I could go to that’s the newest high tech place to find out the most information that I possibly can,” Griffith said. “If I was living in poverty with four kids and I couldn’t make ends meet and I had a f–king seizure, what do you do? How does the average person, man or woman, get the help?”

The actress has been married three times, twice to Don Johnson (briefly in 1976 and again from 1989 to 1996), Steven Bauer (from 1981 to 1989) and Banderas (from 1986 to 2015). She welcomed three children throughout her marriages, including Alexander Bauer, 32, Dakota Johnson, 27, and Stella Banderas, 20.

Sign up now for the Us Weekly newsletter to get breaking celebrity news, hot pics and more delivered straight to your inbox!

Want stories like these delivered straight to your phone? Download the Us Weekly iPhone app now!