Sarah Hyland is candid about her health struggles, and she’s continuing to show off the scars from her kidney transplants on social media.
The Modern Family actress, 28, took to Instagram on Thursday to poke fun at talk show host Ellen DeGeneres’ ongoing battle vying for the title of Jennifer Anniston’s best friend, sharing a mirror selfie of her midsection.
“Hey @theellenshow I know you’re besties with Jen but does she wear your underwear outside of her jeans like me? #showyourscars,” Hyland captioned the photo in which she wore Ellen DeGeneres underwear, the scars from her various procedures also visible.
Hyland, who stars as Haley Dunphy on the popular ABC comedy, was born with kidney dysplasia, a condition in which one or both of the kidneys do not fully form in the womb. As a result of the condition, Hyland has undergone a total of 16 surgeries throughout her life, including a 2012 kidney transplant in which she received a kidney from her father.
Although the first transplant seemed successful, Hyland revealed in December 2018 that her body had rejected the transplant and she had undergone a second transplant with a kidney donated by her brother in September 2017.
The multiple procedures left her with a midsection that “looks like the New Jersey turnpike,” she explained in a video in which she showed off and described the stories behind each individual scar.
“For the first transplant they cut in like this. It kind of looks like either a samurai sword attack or a shark bite," Hyland said. “For the nephrectomy, it's pretty much the same, just in a different curvature. And then the second transplant, they put it on the other side, so now I have that from there to there."
“When they do a kidney transplant, they connect the new kidney to your old kidneys in front. It sticks out. I call it my KUPA, kidney upper p— area. Always have. Will forever," she continued. “For me it's always hard for KUPA to be on display. Still mentally it's hard to get over that. But I think personally, for someone being so tiny to have a stomach that looks like the New Jersey turnpike just shows who I am and the kind of character I have."
The actress, who said that she doesn’t define herself by her health issues, recently celebrated her body by partnering with Olay for the Skin Transformed campaign, which she explained is “all about celebrating the transformation of OUR own bodies, and how they are often works-in-progress..not perfection.”