Pia’s ‘confronting’ Survivor diagnosis
Australian Survivor favourite Pia Miranda has opened up to fans about a skin condition that flared up visibly during her time filming the reality series.
Looking For Alibrandi actress Miranda, 46, opened up about battling the skin condition vitiligo, which causes patches of skin to lose pigment and turn white, while competing in the tough TV competition in Fiji earlier this year.
The mum-of-two revealed it had been "confronting" watching her skin undergo a "transformation" - all while filming a national TV show without a stitch of make-up on.
While the effects of the condition haven't been hugely noticeable on screen, Miranda said she had heard from a few eagle-eyed viewers who'd noticed the change.
"A few people have been asking me about my skin on Survivor, and if you have been watching you may have noticed that it's going through somewhat of a transformation. Well it turns out that while playing I had a flare up of an Autoimmune condition called Vitiligo," Miranda wrote on Instagram.
Miranda revealed she was made aware that the condition was occurring during filming but decided to "push through and not stress" until she came home because she wanted to focus on the task at hand.
"Since seeing a specialist I've been told that it's a condition that needs lifelong management, but I'm having some amazing treatment and it's working really well so I'm feeling very lucky," she said.
"It's not ideal that it happened in real time on TV, as it was pretty confronting knowing I was being filmed, but I think what initially felt like a negative can be a positive."
Miranda said she hoped her appearance on Australian Survivor could "lift the spirits" of anyone else dealing with vitiligo or other skin conditions.
"I'm thinking there are enough perfect looking people on TV, so I'm happy to offer an alternative and be someone who is perfectly fine with being imperfect. Anyway, a bit of a skin thing isn't going to stop me playing hard and having fun, so I hope you enjoy my journey because I sure did."
In an interview with Luke Dennehy for news.com.au over the weekend, Miranda also opened up about how difficult she found readjusting back to normal life after her Survivor stint came to an end.
"Even looking out of a window is overwhelming. The first time I heard a song I burst into tears. So all those things that are normal become pretty full-on," she said.
And while she's been a huge Survivor fan for years, she admitted she had some reservations when it came to actually playing the game herself.
"The main issue for me was that I am pretty private, so it was pretty scary for me to put myself out there," she said.
"I knew that if I was going to go out and do the show, I really had to play. I knew I was going to open myself up for a lot of judgment."
Australian Survivor continues 7.30pm tonight with the second part of the show's latest twist, "Exile Island". Contestant Daisy Richardson was banished to exile at tribal council in Sunday's episode, and tonight the tribe will vote for another contestant to join her. The two will then battle it out in a challenge, with the winner given the chance to rejoin the game.
Australian Survivor airs 7.30pm Sundays to Tuesdays on Ten.