13 Reasons Why Star Reveals Shock Tumour Diagnosis
13 Reasons Why star Kate Walsh has revealed that she had to undergo emergency surgery two years ago after a shock cancer diagnosis.
The actor, who played Hannah's mother in the controversial Netflix series, told Cosmopolitan that she had first started noticing that her health was declining in January 2015, but put it down to the menopause.
"The exhaustion got to the point where I could drink five cups of coffee and still not feel awake or clear," Walsh said. "And then, around April, I started having more cognitive difficulties.
"It felt like aphasia, but it wasn't just not being able to find words; I would lose my train of thought, I wasn't able to finish sentences, and that was when I got really alarmed."
When the 49-year-old realised that she had started to swerve when driving and that she was having difficulty speaking, she went in for an MRI.
"You know it's serious when they don't even wait, they're like, 'Hey, the radiologist wants to see you.'
"And she starts to say, 'Well it looks like you have a very sizeable brain tumour' - and I just left my body."
Three days after her diagnosis, Walsh was having surgery.
"It was over five cm, like a small lemon in my head, causing quite a bit of damage," she recalls. "There was a lot of swelling and I had started getting shooting pains in my head.
"The whole situation was so overwhelming, and I was just so relieved to know there was something wrong, that it wasn't just my imagination and that my instincts were correct."
After the surgery, Walsh took a nine-month break from work before easing back into things with Girls Trip and 13 Reasons Why but, she says, she's not taking her health for granted anymore.
"In my business, it's not unusual to be working 17-hour days, so it can be really challenging, but now I know I absolutely need seven or eight hours of sleep," she says now.
"I want to spend more time with my family and friends. I want to work on projects that I just love, with people that I love."