In a surprise announcement, Venus Williams withdrew from the 2011 US Open due to a diagnosis of Sjogren’s Syndrome, an autoimmune disease characterized by dryness of the mouth and eyes.  The exact cause of Sjogren’s Syndrome is not known, although there is a growing support for genetic factors. It is most commonly (90%) found in women.

In her statement, Venus said: “I’m really disappointed to have to withdraw from this year’s US Open. I have been recently diagnosed with Sjogren’s Syndrome, an autoimmune disease which is an ongoing medical condition that affects my energy level and causes fatigue and joint pain.”

I enjoyed playing my first match here and wish I could continue but right now I am unable to. I am thankful I finally have a diagnosis and am now focused on getting better and returning to the court soon.”

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