Carolina's Bryan Bickell diagnosed with multiple sclerosis

Carolina Hurricanes' Bryan Bickell (29) works againstEdmonton Oilers' Tyler Pitlick during the first period of an NHL hockey game Tuesday, Oct. 18, 2016, in Edmonton, Alberta. (Amber Bracken/The Canadian Press via AP)

RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) Carolina Hurricanes forward Bryan Bickell has been diagnosed with multiple sclerosis.

General manager Ron Francis announced the diagnosis Friday.

Bickell said in a statement issued by the team that ''during the past few weeks, it felt like something wasn't right,'' and that he's ''been struggling to understand what was going on with my body'' since the 2015 playoffs with Chicago.

Francis says the 30-year-old player will take some time to rest from the disease that attacks the nervous system. Bickell says he hopes to keep playing.

Carolina acquired Bickell in a trade with the Blackhawks over the summer. The three-time Stanley Cup winner with Chicago has one goal in seven games with the Hurricanes but hasn't played since Oct. 30.