Dubbed ‘Daytime’s Leading Lady,’ actress Susan Lucci has had an astounding career as an actress and a TV host. Her role of Erica Kane in the ABC daytime drama All My Children is one of the most famous there are and the character is considered iconic.
In 1996, TV Guide ranked Lucci number 37 on its 50 Greatest TV Stars of All Time list. The Devious Made star also was named one of VH1’s 200 Top Icons of All Time and one of Barbara Walters’s Ten Most Fascinating People.
Unfortunately, Lucci has been experiencing health problems in recent years. Back in 2018, she was forced to undergo emergency heart surgery for a major blockage in her arteries that could have ended in a fatal heart attack.
The symptoms she had been experiencing, such as short breath, pain and pressure on her chest, raised a red flag so she visited the hospital and underwent a CT scan. Sadly, the tests that doctors ran indicated she had 90% blockage in the heart’s main artery and 70% blockage in another branch.
Just recently, the actress revealed during an interview that she had underwent a second emergency cardiac surgery. This time her symptoms were less severe, but just as the first time, she noticed them on time.
Speaking of her health state, Dr. Richard Shlofmitz, chairman of cardiology at St. Francis Hospital in Roslyn, New York, told Good Morning America, “This time, she wasn’t experiencing a heart attack and she wasn’t mentally disturbed. However, she displayed symptoms that made me worry that something could be amiss.”
If she hadn’t experienced the symptoms on time, she could have easily suffered severe heart attack.
Two months after her January 2022 procedure, Lucci’s husband Helmut Huber died at age 84.
“After that, nothing seemed important, my health or anything else,” she admitted. “I didn’t care about anything else.”
“I lost the love of my life and that’s been awful, but I have friends who make me laugh and keep me out and about, and I’m determined to keep putting one foot in front of the other.”
The truth is that not every cardiac condition has observable symptoms because not all of them are felt in the chest.
Lucci decided to open up about her health and the issues she had experienced because she wanted to encourage other women to be proactive about their health.
“Listen to your heart and act on it. Be your own best friend, be your own advocate. You’ll save your life,” Lucci said. “I feel so lucky to have the platform that I have. I just wanted to be able to do something other than entertain.”
In 2019, Susan Lucci walked down the runway at the 2019 American Heart Association’s Go Red for Women Red Dress Collection.
Lucci is thankful to her doctors for saving her life.