Whoopi Goldberg Reveals She's Now Using a Walker Because of Her Sciatica

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Whoopi Goldberg on The View
Jenny Anderson/ABC via Getty Images

Whoopi Goldberg is recovering after suffering from sciatica. Goldberg returned to The View on Tuesday after not appearing on the show for a week, and explained that her absence was caused by the health issue.

Goldberg, 65, appeared in good spirits despite her painful experience.

"Yes, it's me, I'm back," she said. "I was out because I was dealing with something called sciatica, which is basically a bulging disc in your back and it impacts the sciatic nerve, which sends pain down your leg. I'm telling you, it's like a bad boyfriend ... a  bad boyfriend who came back to mess with me."

"There I was, trying to move my leg -- impossible to do," she continued. "It was really horrible. But I'm glad to be here."

Goldberg said she now has to use a walker to get around.

"I have a walker, which kind of freaked me out," she acknowledged. "I didn't know that I needed it. And you know what? My first step with the walker, this is my new best friend. I'm just gliding along. So, that's what happened to me. I'm told that it comes out of nowhere."

Goldberg's co-host, Joy Behar, noted that she got sciatica when she was younger and that it's stress-related. Behar urged Goldberg to be careful, but said that she did look well-rested. Goldberg is now back at her home where she's been doing the show since last March.

"Well, what can you do, I'm laying in a hospital room," Goldberg replied with a laugh. "I've turned into this little old Black lady. It's really strange."

According to the Mayo Clinic, sciatica most commonly occurs when a herniated disk, bone spur on the spine or narrowing of the spine compresses part of the nerve. This causes inflammation, pain and often some numbness in the affected leg. Although the pain can be severe, most cases resolve with non-operative treatments in a few weeks.

This isn't the first time Goldberg has missed The View due to health issues. Back in 2019, she missed more than a month from the show due to her battle with pneumonia and said she almost died. 

"I had pneumonia, and I was septic," she said in video to viewers. "Pneumonia in both lungs which meant there was fluid and all kinds of stuff going on and yes I came very, very close to leaving the earth. Good news? I didn't."

A month later she was hospitalized again after a 24-hour bug, though thankfully, her illness that time around wasn't as serious as her pneumonia battle.

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