Kaley Cuoco is sharing details about the time she almost lost her leg in a horseback riding accident ― a moment that “Big Bang Theory” creator and producer Chuck Lorre called “the darkest, most frightening time” in the sitcom’s history.
In a Vanity Fair book excerpt from the “The Big Bang Theory: The Definitive, Inside Story of the Epic Hit Series” by Jessica Radloff, Cuoco and her co-stars recalled the accident.
In 2010, Cuoco, an equestrian, fell off her horse and the animal landed on her left leg. She was rushed to the hospital where Lorre happened to run into Dr. Stephen Lombardo, a highly regarded orthopedic surgeon. Dr. Lombardo facilitated a quick operation “with the best surgeons available,” according to People.
But Cuoco faced a grim possibility.
“Before I went into surgery, they made me sign something that said, ‘We don’t know until we get in there and see this leg, and it could come out that you don’t have it anymore,’” she said in the excerpt.
“That wasn’t the case, obviously, but I had to sign something that said, ‘OK, you can,’” Cuoco added. “Everything ended up fine, and I was up and working a week later, but the doctors acted like I was never going to walk again. It’s still too much for me to go into, and it sounded way worse than it was. And of course it was spiraling and everyone was freaking out, which I get. It scared people.”
Cuoco discussed the accident with Ellen DeGeneres shortly after it happened and said her foot was facing the opposite way and was “just dangling.” Doctors told her before taking her to surgery that she “might be coming out with one foot.” Luckily for Cuoco, they only needed to insert two metal bars in her leg. She was hospitalized for two weeks and written out of two episodes.