Susan Lucci Updates Health After Second Heart Surgery in Four Years

Susan Lucci is giving fans a health update on the heels of her second heart surgery in four years. PEOPLE recently spoke with the 76-year-old All My Children star while in attendance at the 75th Annual Writers Guild Awards. "I'm doing really well," Lucci told the outlet from the event's red carpet of New York City's Edison Ballroom. "I always keep an eye on myself, what's going on." Noting how she's been feeling since having her most recent procedure, Lucci said, "It is so far so good." 

The new comments follow Lucci's previous conversation with PEOPLE, wherein she shared about her health journey, admitting,  "I would hear that heart disease is the number one killer of women, but that went in one ear and out the other. But now I get it." Speaking about first learning of her heart issues, Lucci revealed that in Oct. 2018 she began to feel intense chest pressure "like an elephant pressing down." She also experienced pain around her rib cage. However, she says she ignored the pain and attempted to manage it with a pilates regimen and Mediterranean diet.

"Like most women, I thought, 'I have too much to do. It will go away.' I didn't want to bother the cardiologist," Lucci shared. "We take care of our children, we are advocates for our loved ones, but we're not at the top of our own to-do list." However, a heart scan revealed that the actress had a 90% blockage in her main artery. "I didn't realize how close I came to a fatal heart attack," she said, revealing that her condition turned out to be "hereditary from my dad's side" and required her to have two stents, which are small tubes that help keep the arterial passageways open. 

"It's important for everyone to know their family history," Lucci went on to urge readers. "I don't think that I ever mentioned my dad's family history to a doctor." Unfortunately, the actress began to deal with issues such as shortness of breath and chest pain in January 2022, which eventually led her right back to the doctor. This time, it was learned that she had an 80 percent artery blockage caused by cholesterol. She underwent another stent procedure and was rushed into the cardiac catheterization lab. "I almost wasn't going to speak about it, I was so ashamed of myself. But it's a reminder to be vigilant," Lucci told PEOPLE. Now, after what she's been through, Lucci is an ambassador for the American Heart Association and appears to be doing much better.