Ashton Kutcher ‘lucky to be alive’ after suffering from rare autoimmune disorder vasculitis

·2-min read
 Mila Kunis and Ashton Kutcher attend Ping Pong 4 Purpose at Dodger Stadium (Getty Images for Kershaw's Chall)
Mila Kunis and Ashton Kutcher attend Ping Pong 4 Purpose at Dodger Stadium (Getty Images for Kershaw's Chall)

Ashton Kutcher has said he is “lucky to be alive” after suffering from “super rare” auto-immune disease vasculitis.

The That ‘70s show star revealed, in a clip from an upcoming episode of National Geographic’s “Running Wild with Bear Grylls”, that the disease had affected his ability to see, hear and walk .

“Like two years ago, I had this weird, super-rare form of vasculitis,” he told Grylls.

“Knocked out my vision, knocked out my hearing, knocked out like all my equilibrium. It took me like a year to like build it all back up,” Kutcher told the adventurer as they hiked through brambles and trees.

“You don’t really appreciate it until it’s gone, until you go, ‘I don’t know if I’m ever gonna be able to see again. I don’t know if I’m gonna be able to hear again, I don’t know if I’m going to be able to walk again,” Kutcher said. “I’m lucky to be alive.”

The actor said he has since fully recovered from the disease which claimed the life of Ghostbusters star Harold Ramis.

What is vasculitis?

NHS Direct says there are many types of vasculitis–which literally means inflammation of the blood vessels—that can affect people of all ages.

On their website, it says: “Inflammation is your immune system’s natural response to injury or infection. It causes swelling and can help the body deal with invading germs.

“But in vasculitis, for some reason the immune system attacks healthy blood vessels, causing them to become swollen and narrow.

“This may be triggered by an infection or a medicine, although often the cause is unknown.

“Vasculitis can range from a minor problem that just affects the skin, to a more serious illness that causes problems with organs like the heart or kidneys.”

Treatment is aimed at reducing inflammation. For mild cases, over-the-counter pain medicines can help. For more severe cases, doctors may prescribe steroids, monoclonal antibodies, and immunomodulators or immunosuppressive medications.

US actor Ashton Kutcher (L) and wife US actress Mila Kunis at the Oscars. (AFP via Getty Images)
US actor Ashton Kutcher (L) and wife US actress Mila Kunis at the Oscars. (AFP via Getty Images)

Hollywood power couple Mila Kunis and Kutcher were recently personally thanked by Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky and his wife Olena after they raised money to help victims of the Russian invasion.

Kunis, of Ukrainian heritage, created a GoFundMe with her husband which raised more than £13.7m, the Evening Standard previously reported.