Initial reports claimed The Challenge star Vinny Foti has been hospitalized with heart failure. But Foti's sister exclusively revealed to RadarOnline.com that the former MTV star is actually suffering from pneumonia.
"He's been in the hospital since last Monday, it's scary," his sister Jaclyn Gargano told RadarOnline.com. "He went in with pneumonia. He had fluid in his lungs, which caused him to have trouble breathing. His heart was in distress, but he did not have heart failure."
Gargano explained how he is currently on a ventilator in the ICU because his body was "in so much distress."
"He is making progress," she said. "His wife saw him. He opened his eyes and responded to her voice. Our mother is flying out there to provide more support. Once she gets out there we'll know more."
She explained how drugs were not the cause of the hospitalization, as he "works out and takes care of himself."
"He was not abusing drugs," she said. "No overdose or drinking. He's not a big drinker."
Gargano is hopeful her brother, who is the father of two young daughters, will "pull through."
The heart failure rumor began when Foti's co-stars started a GoFundMe page.
"Our sweet, dear friend and coworker Vinny Foti is in ICU with heart failure," the page read. "He is on a ventilator and is sedated. He is a loving father and husband. We are trying to help raise money for medical expenses and other things needed for the family. They have two daughters ages 2yrs , and 2 months old. Please help us pull together and help this beautiful family. Please help if you can."
His sister said, "It was nice of them to start the page, but whoever wrote it was misunderstood."
His wife Krista has been providing updates on her social media pages.
"Thanks again for your prayers, tweets, post, likes, babysitter offers and donations," she wrote. "We have a good update today. I went and saw Vinny. He's looking a lot better today, his fever went down to a 100, The fluid is all drained out of his lungs, he moved his hands and opened his eyes even though they were rolled back. That's a start."
Foti competed on The Challenge: Fresh Meat II, The Challenge: Cutthroat and The Challenge: Battle of the Exes.
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