US & Canada

Demi Lovato 'in Los Angeles hospital for suspected overdose'

Demi Lovato Image copyright Getty Images
Image caption The 25-year-old has sung about her struggle with addiction in the past

Pop singer Demi Lovato is being treated in a Los Angeles hospital after a suspected drug overdose.

The Los Angeles Police Department responded on Tuesday to a medical emergency in the Hollywood Hills, where the Sorry Not Sorry singer lives.

The 25-year-old was reportedly found unconscious and treated at the scene with naloxone, an anti-opioid medicine.

She is awake and breathing at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center, a family spokesman has said.

"Demi is awake and with her family who want to express thanks to everyone for the love, prayers and support," the spokesman told the BBC.

"Some of the information being reported is incorrect and they respectfully ask for privacy."

Lovato has struggled with substance abuse for years, and was feared to have relapsed in recent weeks.

Last month she cancelled her show at London's O2 arena, announcing the news on Twitter hours before the concert was due to begin.

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Media captionDemi Lovato helps woman overcome depression and self-harm

In a single released last month, Sober, she sings: "Mommy, I'm so sorry I'm not sober anymore. And daddy please forgive me for the drinks spilled on the floor."

The song ends with the lines: "I'm sorry that I'm here again, I promise I'll get help/It wasn't my intention, I'm sorry to myself."

The track release followed Lovato marking six years of sobriety in March this year.

She was due to complete the North American leg of her Tell Me You Love Me world tour with a concert in Atlantic City, New Jersey, on Thursday, but reports say that date has now been cancelled.

Her fans say the singer's battles with bipolar disorder, bulimia and addiction - often documented in her music - have helped them with their own struggles.

As reports of her condition spread, there was an outpouring of support on social media from other celebrities and musicians. Within hours of the report, tens of thousands of people had tweeted the hashtag #PrayforDemi.

It is unclear what drugs Lovato overdosed on. Early reports said it was heroin but this was later contradicted.

Friends who found Lovato reportedly used Narcan - a brand name for naloxone - on her at the scene to help her breathe. Naloxone is an antidote to opioids including painkillers.

The US is in the grip of an opioid crisis. According to health officials, 115 Americans die from an opioid overdose every day and more than 250,000 Americans have died of them over the past decade.

Raised in Dallas, Texas, Lovato first entered the spotlight on the children's TV series Barney & Friends.

She appeared alongside the Jonas Brothers in the 2008 Disney Channel movie Camp Rock.

Lovato released her first studio album, Don't Forget, in 2008.

In a YouTube documentary, Simply Complicated, released last October, Lovato revealed her drug use began when she first tried cocaine at the age of 17.

Image copyright AFP
Image caption Demi Lovato first entered the spotlight as a child on a children's TV programme

"I felt out of control the first time I did it," she said. "My dad was an addict and an alcoholic.

"Guess I always searched for what he found in drugs and alcohol because it fulfilled him and he chose that over a family."

Lovato went to rehab for the first time in 2010.

"I wasn't ready to get sober," she said in the documentary.

"I was sneaking it on planes, sneaking it in bathrooms, sneaking it throughout the night".

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