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Eric Clapton Struggling with Lower Back Pain and Nerve Damage

One of rock ‘n’ roll’s greatest guitar players says that nerve damage and lower back pain have limited his ability to play.

In a recent interview with Classic Rock Magazine, Eric Clapton revealed that he is suffering from peripheral neuropathy. “I’ve had quite a lot of pain over the last year. It started with lower back pain, and turned into what they call peripheral neuropathy – which is where you feel like you have electric shocks going down your leg.”

“[It’s] hard work to play the guitar and I’ve had to come to terms with the fact that it will not improve,” Clapton added.

The 71-year-old guitar legend has released his 23rd album with a promising, first-person title: I Still Do. Clapton supported this album with a brief string of performances in Tokyo. Currently, he has no upcoming tour dates scheduled.

In 2013, the guitarist was forced to cancel several tour dates due to lower back pain. The following year, he discussed retirement in an interview with Uncut Magazine. “The road has become unbearable,” he said. “There are tons of things I’d like to do, but I’m looking at retirement too.”

“I don’t know how I survived – the 70s especially,” said Clapton. “For some reason, I was plucked from the jaws of hell and given another chance.”

Peripheral neuropathy results from nerve damage in the body. The guitarist, who has written about overcoming his addictions in his 2007 autobiography Clapton, said that it was a “great thing to be alive at all…by rights I should have kicked the bucket a long time ago.”