The Modern Family actress revealed that she was forced to have a second kidney transplant after the first one failed. The failed attempt lead to mental health issues that lead to her “contemplating suicide.’
Sarah Hyland has kidney dysplasia, which means the actresses kidneys did not develop properly while she was still in the womb. Another symptom that she suffered from was numerous cysts that would form in her kidneys and were extremely painful. Her condition got severe in 2012, which resulted in her getting her first kidney transplant. Her father donated his kidney to her, but in October 2016 her body started to show signs of rejecting the organ.
Hyland opened up about her painful experience with Self Magazine, and said: “We did all of these tests and all of these treatments to try and save the kidney.” It seems things got worse when she spent the holiday season in the hospital, “Christmas break, New Year’s, Thanksgiving, my birthday, all of that spent in the hospital.”
Despite different treatments, nothing seemed to work on Hyland. Her doctor shockingly said her kidney was like a burning house-it had already suffered extreme damage. “You can’t un-burn a house,” she said.
She had to resort to regular dialysis at the tender age of just 26. Dialysis is a temporary treatment where the machine cleans the blood in and out, which is what a kidney is supposed to do. The process required her putting a tube on her chest and it aided in her massive weight loss. While she was dealing with health issues and weight loss, many of her followers started to criticize her appearance on social media.
Her doctors removed her father’s kidney in May 2017, and her younger brother Ian offered to donate his own, which was thankfully a perfect match. Despite the happy news of the match, the actress did feel conflicted and depressed.
“When a family member gives you a second chance at life, and it fails, it almost feels like it’s your fault. It’s not. But it does. For a long time, I was contemplating suicide, because I didn’t want to fail my little brother like I failed my dad.”
The actress decided to reach out to close friends and talked about the dangerous suicidal thoughts she had been harboring. “It’s not shameful,” she says, “For anybody that wants to reach out to somebody but doesn’t really know how because they’re too proud or they think that they’ll be looked upon as weak, it’s not a shameful thing to say. It’s not a shameful thing to share.”
Thanks to her brother, she underwent her second kidney transplant in September 2017. Sadly, her health problems weren’t over Hyland also has endometriosis, and the pain was excruciating, and if that wasn’t enough, she had a previously undiagnosed abdominal hernia. “I was still in severe pain after the transplant, and that was due to the endo and the hernia,” she said. Hyland has had six surgeries in the last sixteen months, and sixteen total in the course of her young life.