Caroline Wozniacki has revealed she has been struggling with rheumatoid arthritis over the last few months.
The former No.1 was diagnosed with the auto-immune disease just before the US Open earlier this year but managed to play through the pain barrier.
The Danish star began her year with her maiden Grand Slam title, when she won the Australian Open, before her season ended it with a defeat to Elina Svitolina at the WTA Finals.
Wozniacki will now use the off-season to plan how to manage the illness, which causes swelling of the joints and fatigue.
She told a press conference: "In the beginning it was a shock. Just you feel like you’re the fittest athlete out there, or that’s in my head, that’s what I’m known for, and all of a sudden you have this to work with.
"It’s obviously not ideal for anybody and I think when you’re a professional athlete, it’s also not even more ideal. But you find a plan, figure out what to do, you do your research, and thankfully there are great things now that you can do to it and do about it.
"You just kind of move on from it and work through it and figure out how to deal with it and live with it.
"You learn how to just cope after matches. Some days you wake up and you can’t get out of bed and you just have to know that’s how it is, but other days you live and you’re fine. You don’t even feel like you have it.
"It’s something that now I’m happy that I’m done with the season and you can just kind of control it a little bit more and figure out a plan how to control it even better in the future.
"Some people can go into remission and some people it just stops, the disease, and it’s just right there and it’s not going to get worse, or if it does, it’s slowly.
"The medicine now is so amazing so I’m not worried about it. So that’s great. You just have to be aware."
Wozniacki did suffer a drop in results after her diagnosis, until bouncing back in style, winning the China Open in Beijing earlier this month.
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