We’ve known for a while that Phillip Phillips has had a rough season on American Idol. He had no trouble trouble winning over the hearts of American voters at home (he was crowned victor last night), but he struggled with kidney stone issues throughout the competition and put off much-needed surgery to complete the show.

Now Phillip’s parents have spoken out to say that their talented son was suffering a whole lot more than he let on.

Speaking to Radar Online, his dad Phillip Phillips Sr. explained, “It’s been long hard struggle for him… He just sucked it up and endured.” Phillip’s mother Sheryl added that she “could tell he's been in pain the whole time.”

Phillip Sr. also told PEOPLE that his son endured a whopping eight surgeries during his time on the show! “He's hitting 50 percent, but he's still up there swinging away,” said the proud father.

With Idol over now, Phillip will have to go through reconstructive surgery on his kidney, and he’s already endured one surgery for the ailment: implanting a synthetic stint to keep his kidney functioning properly. “He said it’s painful wearing the stint,” said Phillip Sr. “That’s why you see him moving like an old man. He can’t move.”

Poor fella! We’re just glad that in the end, all of his efforts were rewarded.

Source: Radar Online and PEOPLE

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