Ex-Browns QB Bernie Kosar diagnosed with Parkinson's disease, also likely needs liver transplant

CLEVELAND, OH - AUGUST 17: Cleveland Browns pre season broadcast sideline reporter Bernie Kosar on the field prior to the National Football League preseason game between the Buffalo Bills and Cleveland Browns on August 17, 2018, at FirstEnergy Stadium in Cleveland, OH. Buffalo defeated Cleveland 19-17. (Photo by Frank Jansky/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)
The exact cause of Bernie Kosar's liver issues are reportedly not yet known. (Photo by Frank Jansky/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)

Bernie Kosar, considered by many to be the best Cleveland Browns quarterback of the Super Bowl era, is facing significant health issues, he revealed to Cleveland Magazine.

The 60-year-old former Pro Bowler has reportedly been diagnosed with Parkinson's disease and is suffering from liver failure enough that he will likely require a liver transplant. Specifically, a member of his medical team said there is more than a 90% chance he will need a new liver.

Kosar reportedly said he has been dealing with health issues connected to his liver for years, but ignored the pain until he was diagnosed with cirrhosis 16 months ago. He recalled to Cleveland Magazine watching a Browns game against the New York Jets on Dec. 28 when his symptoms became particularly bad, leading to his hospitalization:

“My body gave out on me,’’ he says. "I really felt like I wasn’t going to make it home from the Jets game. I sucked it up, though, and continued to avoid the doctors until the new year. Then I went into the hospital and got a massive blood transfusion. It was like: ‘How are you alive? How are you moving? Because your hemoglobin levels are so low.’’’

He reportedly became seriously ill again when traveling to Super Bowl LVIII in Las Vegas, leading to a hospital stay of several days after his flight.

According to a doctor, the cause of Kosar's liver failure has not been determined. His liver reportedly contains “an incredibly high level of an organic solvent, higher than we’ve seen literally in anyone.’’

From Cleveland Magazine, Dr. Michael Roizen of the Cleveland Clinic said:

“This compound doesn’t live in humans for 24 hours. But it’s lived in him for probably 10 years, and we don’t know why.’’

Kosar remains beloved in Cleveland, having starred for nine seasons with the Browns. He led them to the playoffs in five straight seasons, a franchise record in the Super Bowl era, and he remains close to the top of the franchise leaderboard in nearly every meaningful passing statistic.

He also boasts a Super Bowl ring from his time as a backup on the Dallas Cowboys in 1994 and a champion in the college ranks with Miami in 1983.