Ashton Kutcher Says He's 'Lucky to Be Alive' After Battle with Rare Autoimmune Disease

·2 min read
Ashton Kutcher
Ashton Kutcher

Stefanie Keenan/Getty Ashton Kutcher

Ashton Kutcher says he's "lucky to be alive" after dealing with a rare autoimmune disorder.

In Access Hollywood's sneak peek at an upcoming episode of National Geographic's "Running Wild with Bear Grylls: The Challenge," the 44-year-old actor opened up about his private battle with a condition that left him unable to walk, see or hear.

"Like two years ago, I had this weird, super rare form of vasculitis, that knocked out my vision, it knocked out my hearing, it knocked out like all my equilibrium," Kutcher revealed in the clip.  "It took me like a year to build it all back up."

"You don't really appreciate it until it's gone," he continued. "Until you go, 'I don't know if I'm ever going to be able to see again, I don't know if I'm ever going to be able to hear again, I don't know if I'm ever going to be able to walk again.'"

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Vasculitis is an autoimmune disease that causes inflammation and narrowing of blood vessels, which restricts blood flow and can cause damage to the organs and tissue.

Symptoms may include weakness in the hands and feet, abrupt hearing loss or temporary blindness in one or both eyes, according to the Mayo Clinic.

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In the preview, host Bear Gryllis praised Kutcher for being "strong and resilient." The That 70s Show actor added that he's "lucky to be alive" and is now using the health scare as a learning experience.

"The minute you start seeing your obstacles as things that are made for you, to give you what you need, then life starts to get fun, right?" Kutcher said. "You start surfing on top of your problems instead of living underneath them."

Ashton Kutcher
Ashton Kutcher

Dave Starbuck/Shutterstock

While the actor keeps his life fairly private, last year Kutcher's wife Mila Kunis opened up about how the actor gave himself pancreatitis from drinking "too much carrot juice" while preparing to play Steve Jobs in 2013's Jobs. (Jobs was strict with his diet while dealing with his neuroendocrine cancer.)

Kutcher, too, followed a fruit-only diet to get into character as the late visionary for the biopic — and said he was "doubled over in pain" from his pancreatic issues.

"He was so dumb. He only ate grapes at one point, it was so stupid," Kunis told host Sean Evans on an episode of the web series Hot Ones. "We ended up in the hospital twice with pancreatitis!"