Phillip Phillips Had 8 Surgeries During "Idol"

The winner almost quit the competition

By Cathy Rainone
|  Thursday, May 24, 2012  |  Updated 5:13 PM EDT
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Phillip Phillips Had 8 Surgeries During "Idol"

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American Idol Winner Phillip Phillips

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Phillip Phillips came really close to quitting "American Idol."

The Season 11 winner, who charmed millions of viewers, has been battling a kidney condition and had eight surgeries since the competition started, said Phillips’ father, People Magazine reported.

“He's been doing [well], but it's just grueling hours and it's just amazing what he's done through the journey," said the singer’s dad, also named Phillip Phillips, at the show's after party. “He's hitting 50 percent, but he's still up there swinging away."

The Georgia guitarist, 21, had a build up of kidney stones and had eight operations to remove them. He will have another surgery to reconstruct his kidneys in the weeks ahead, but expects to make a full recovery in time for the Idol’s Live tour, which kicks off July 7 in Detroit.

"It's just my right kidney kind of isn't functioning," Phillip said during a conference call with reporters Thursday afternoon, according to USA Today. "I have a stent to help with that. I've got to get that fixed up pretty soon."

The former pawn shop worker was in such excruciating pain that he considered quitting the competition several times, USA Today reported.

"I had some bad days, and I had some pretty good days," Phillips said. "It was rough at times. I came close to almost dropping out to get the surgery done, but my doctors helped me out a lot."

Phillips, who beat out 16-year old Jessica Sanchez after 132 million votes were cast, says he can’t wait to take the stage again.

"I'm ready just to jam out man,” said Phillips. “I don't know if I'll be singing a lot -- it's going to be a lot of jam music."

Selected Reading: People, USA Today

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