Many All My Children fans have been concerned about Debbi Morgan (Angie Hubbard) since the actress made an unexpected exit from the show last month to tend to what the a show rep called "a personal matter."
Now, Morgan has opened up for the first time about what sidelined her.
"I had to take a leave of absence because I was diagnosed with Lyme disease," Morgan explained during a visit to the Tom Joyner Morning Show. "It's nothing fatal. Lyme disease is an infection caused by the Borrelia bacteria from a tick."
Doctors were unable to tell Morgan exactly when she'd contracted the disease, but hinted that she could have had the condition for more than a decade.
"It's a chronic condition and I've had it in my system for over 15 years," Morgan stated. "I had two pit bulls when I lived up in the hills of L.A. and could've gotten [bit] from [a tick on] them."
Early symptoms may include fever, headache, and fatigue, and the disease is typically indicated by a "bull's-eye" rash called an erythema migrans. The vagueness of initial symptoms can often be overlooked or attributed to other medical conditions. In most cases, a Lyme disease infection can be eliminated with antibiotics. Left untreated, Lyme disease can cause joint pain, and problems with the heart and central nervous system.
Morgan assured fans that she was on the mend, and revealed that her All My Children return is already in the works. The Emmy-winning actress will report back to the studio "around the second week in February."
Asked when Angie would regain her sight, Morgan said that she wasn't sure.
"This is something I've been asking the producers since four weeks after I had to start bumping into walls," Morgan confessed, noting that she has found it difficult to act when she's unable to express emotion and recognition with her eyes.
Earlier this week, Morgan earned an Image Award nomination.
Morgan made her first All My Children appearance in 1982. She left All My Children in 1990, but continued on as her Pine Valley alter ego from 1993 to 1995 on Loving, and from 1995 to 1997 on The City. She returned full-time to AMC in January 2008.