Sarah Hyland recently shared a picture of her surgery scars on social media, leading many to praise her for her honesty and bravery.
The Modern Family actor has kidney dysplasia, a condition which occurs when one or both of a foetus’ kidneys do not develop normally while in the womb and which have resulted in Sarah having 16 surgeries over her lifetime.
Having had two kidney transplants – the second of which she underwent because the first transplanted kidney began to fail – Sarah has since made clear to her fans that she wants to be as transparent as possible about her condition.
One such way she plans on doing this is by sharing unedited pictures of her scars on social media to show her fans there’s nothing to be ashamed about.
Tagging TV personality Ellen DeGeneres in an Instagram post recently, Sarah shared a picture of herself – wearing some special underwear gifted from The Ellen Show – in which her scars were visible.
The 28-year-old wrote alongside the picture:
Hey @theellenshow I know you’re besties with Jen but does she wear your underwear outside of her jeans like me? #showyourscars
The caption, which referenced Ellen’s recent claims that Jennifer Aniston is her best friend, also used the hashtag #showyourscars to celebrate her own.
Immediately, her followers began praising the actor for her honesty and her bravery for sharing real pictures of her scars.
While one person told Sarah to be ‘proud’ of her scars because she got through ‘a really difficult ordeal,’ another thanked the actor for helping calm her nerves before she undergoes her own kidney transplant this week.
Even more people thanked her for ‘putting herself out there’ to represent the ‘unknown members of the transplant community’.
Sarah was diagnosed with kidney dysplasia as a child, undergoing a kidney transplant from her dad, Edward James, in 2012. However, although her dad was a match, the kidney began to fail towards the end of 2016.
Sharing her story with SELF magazine, Hyland explained how nothing could be done to save the kidney, which at that point had become ‘like a house that caught on fire’.
After having that kidney removed in May 2017, Sarah learnt her younger brother was a match for her, but the first failed attempt at a transplant made the actor wary of trying again.
The 28-year-old explained how she felt pressure for the second transplant to work, the thought worrying her so much she even considered suicide.
When a family member gives you a second chance at life, and it fails, it almost feels like it’s your fault. And it’s not, but it does.
When a second family member, someone, you’re supposed to look after, like a little brother, wants to give you a third chance at life, it’s scary, because you don’t want to fail them.
For a long time, I was contemplating suicide, because I didn’t want to fail my little brother like I failed my dad.
Hats off to Sarah for using her platform to help others and we wish her the best of luck with her recovery.
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A Broadcast Journalism Masters graduate who went on to achieve an NCTJ level 3 Diploma in Journalism, Lucy has done stints at ITV, BBC Inside Out and Key 103. While working as a journalist for UNILAD, Lucy has reported on breaking news stories while also writing features about mental health, cervical screening awareness, and Little Mix (who she is unapologetically obsessed with).