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Sandra Oh Says She Got ‘Very, Very Sick’ While Working on Grey’s Anatomy

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Ironically, Sandra Oh says she became sick while playing cardiothoracic surgeon Dr. Cristina Yang on Grey’s Anatomy

During a sit-down discussion between Oh and Squid Game star Jung Ho-yeon for Variety’s Actors on Actors series, the pair compared their experiences with overnight fame after the debut of their hit series. Oh explained how her “life changed” following the debut of Grey’s Anatomy in 2005. 

"It’s tricky to imagine, because this is almost 20 years ago, so the context is very different, but the stress is the same—or the confusion is the same,” Oh said, adding that she had to learn to prioritize her personal health after spending the early days of her career pushing through her symptoms. “Honestly, I got sick. I think my whole body was very, very sick.”

Oh starred on Grey’s Anatomy for ten seasons before announcing her exit in August 2013. For the role of Dr. Yang, she earned a Golden Globe Award, two Screen Actors Guild Awards, and five Emmy Award nominations for outstanding supporting actress in a drama series.

“You keep on working, right? It’s just like, ‘Oh, I can’t sleep. Oh, my back hurts. I don’t know what’s wrong with my skin,’” Oh continued. “I learned that I had to take care of my health first. But that’s not only your body, right? That is your soul. That is definitely your mind. Because you can’t ultimately depend on anyone else. You have to somehow find it within yourself.”

This is not the first time Sandra Oh has spoken about the negative side of fame while working on Grey’s Anatomy. In August 2021, the Killing Eve star described the experience as “traumatic” and revealed that she was unable to go out and would have to hide in restaurants. 

“To be perfectly honest, it was traumatic,” Oh told Willie Geist for Sunday Today. “The circumstances you need to do your work is with a lot of privacy. And so when one loses one’s anonymity, you have to build skills to still try and be real.” 

Originally Appeared on Glamour