Ashton Kutcher gives more details about his experience with vasculitis, a rare condition that the actor said affects his ability to hear, see and walk.
In a trailer for the upcoming Paramount Plus documentary, The Checkup with Dr. David Agus” Kutcher can be seen reflecting on his health scare and saying, “I couldn’t walk,” and suddenly he couldn’t see either.
“When you come face to face with death, start what you are doing today immediately,” he later continued. “The Checkup” features in-depth conversations about health between dr David Agus – a doctor and author of “A Short Guide to a Long Life” – and celebrities like Oprah Winfrey, Maria Shriver, Howie Mandel, Amy Schumer, Nick Cannon, Jane Fonda and Lily Tomlin.
Kutcher first referenced his vasculitis diagnosis in a glimpse of his National Geographic appearance “Running Wild with Bear Grylls: The Challenge”,
“I had this weird, super rare form of vasculitis that destroyed my vision, hearing and all of my balance,” Kutcher said in the clip shared exclusively with Access Hollywood.
During the episode, Kutcher tells host and survivalist Bear Grylls that it took him “about a year” to recover.
vasculitis is a rare but serious group of disorders that cause inflammation of the blood vessels. Because of this inflammation, blood vessel walls can thicken, reducing blood flow and causing organ or tissue damage. according to the Mayo Clinic.
There are many types of vasculitis and the condition can be short-term or chronic, with symptoms ranging from mild to life-threatening. In general, the American College of Rheumatology reports that vasculitis can affect people of all genders and ages — but specific forms of the condition affect specific populations. For example, Kawasaki disease, a form of vasculitis, only occurs in children.
Symptoms can include fever, headache, fatigue, weight loss, and pain. And as Kutcher found out, the Mayo Clinic reports that the effects of the condition can extend to the ears (including dizziness and sudden hearing loss) and include temporary or permanent blindness and weakness in the hands and feet.
It’s not well understood what causes the condition, although genetic factors, immune system disorders, and drug reactions are among the factors that could contribute, the Mayo Clinic notes. Treatment for vasculitis depends on the type and severity, and the organs affected. It may require medication. Corticosteroids, such as prednisone, are most commonly prescribed to control the inflammation caused by the condition, the Mayo Clinic reports. But it sometimes requires surgery.
Kutcher says he’s “lucky to be alive” and appears to be on the mend while hiking with Grylls in the clip. “You don’t really appreciate it until it’s gone,” Kutcher said. “Until you go, ‘I don’t know if I’ll ever see again, I don’t know if I’ll ever hear again, I don’t know if I’ll ever walk again.
“The Checkup With Dr. David Agus” premieres December 6th on Paramount Plus.