Rosie O'Donnell Opens Up About Having Heart Attack at 50

"I was in my little art studio and my son, who was only young at the time, said to me, 'Mommy you look like a ghost.'"

Rosie O’Donnell is opening up about the heart attack that she had when she was 50.

While speaking on The Best Podcast Ever with hosts Raven-Symoné and Miranda Pearman-Maday, O’Donnell talked about the time she was hospitalized, and how she almost dismissed the attack all together.

“I should’ve died,” said O’Donnell, 61.

The incident first began when she was picking up a friend in a hospital parking lot and someone came and asked her for help.

“She said ‘Rosie, will you help me up?’ So I went over and I helped her up and it took a lot longer than I expected,” described O’Donnell.

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“I got home and my arms were hurting. I thought, ‘That’s funny, it must’ve been from pushing her up.’ So I went about my business.”

“I was in my little art studio and my son, who was only young at the time, said to me, ‘Mommy you look like a ghost,'” she continued.

The comedian googled “women’s heart attack signs,” and while she had “a few” of the symptoms, she didn’t think it “seem[ed]” like a heart attack.

“The truth of the matter is, I had this heart attack on a Monday at 10am,” added O’Donnell. “I get home, I can hardly walk upstairs. I take two baby aspirin, I go to sleep, I wake up and my family goes, ‘You have to go to the doctor.’ I waited until the next day. So it had it Monday and on Wednesday I saw a doctor.”

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The cardiologist she went to then revealed that she was having a “massive heart attack” and was then sent to the emergency room.

“I was like, ‘Wait, wait, what?!’ I couldn’t believe it,” she said. “And then I came to find out that the symptoms for a woman having a heart attack are very different than the symptoms for men having heart attacks. Yet what we see on TV are always men having heart attacks.”

O’Donnell said that she was “real lucky” to be alive after the attack.

“It forced me into my body and to be in touch with my body in a way that I never had been,” concluded O’Donnell. “It made me aware of feelings. I can kind of dissociate and do the world from my head and just try to use my intellect and not really pay attention to my body, but this forced me to pay attention.”

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