Carrie Ann Inaba is recovering after an emergency medical procedure.
The Dancing With the Stars judge recently shared on Instagram that she underwent an emergency appendectomy, the surgical removal of the appendix, with "a few small complications" last week, resulting in a four-night hospital stay.
In video footage posted March 30, Carrie Ann said she had been diagnosed with acute gangrenous appendicitis, which is an inflammation of the appendix, according to the Mayo Clinic. At first, the 55-year-old delayed visiting a medical center for the pain, a choice she ultimately regrets.
"I should have come straight to the hospital right when the pain in my abdomen started, after the sudden and violent vomiting that knocked me off my feet," Carrie Ann shared, adding that she was hesitant be away from her pets. "I should have gone when I couldn't stand without excruciating pain, but I honestly didn't want to leave my babies, and I'm so accustomed to pain—thought I should let it play out."
Post-surgery, Carrie Ann said her recovery journey will take about four to six weeks. She's also extending a warning message about appendicitis attacks, adding that they can "happen suddenly and seemingly out of nowhere."
"And when you are in that much pain, the last thing you want to do is go anywhere," she continued. "And when you have autoimmune disease, you are often having strange health occurrences that no one can explain or help you with so sometimes, you try to wait it out, like I did. I was wrong."
She urged people with pain in their abdomens to seek medical care as "it could be something very serious."
"While it's been quite a painful experience, I also know it's a gift to even feel this pain," Carrie Ann said. "I realize after speaking with my doctor that it could have been much worse."
Previously, Carrie Ann has been open about her experiences with fibromyalgia, lupus, Sjogren's syndrome, scoliosis and spinal stenosis, as seen in a May 2022 blog post on her wellness website, The Carrie Ann Conversations.
She told Health Digest last October that she's been researching the autoimmune diseases and working with her medical team on finding the best treatment plans for her.
"One of the biggest gifts of having autoimmune conditions is that you become much more aware of how fragile your health can be," Carrie Ann said. "With autoimmune conditions, there's so little that they know about it that there's so much space to grow and learn and be your own best advocate."