Selena Gomez almost didn’t make it through her kidney transplant alive, according to best friend Francia Raísa.
When the two underwent the operation last summer, both women experienced serious complications that nearly took their lives. In a new interview with W Magazine, Francia detailed how they each recovered from the three-hour surgery.
“Recovery was hard,” the 29-year-old confessed. “I didn’t want to eat, I didn’t want to drink anything. Selena did have a complication, too. A few hours after our surgery, I woke up and had a text from her that said, ‘I’m really scared.’ My kidney was very active, and when it turned I broke an artery. They had to take her into emergency surgery and get a vein from her leg and build a new artery to keep my kidney in place. She could have died.”
The Secret Life of the American Teenager alum said she kept the news of the transplant private because she knew how difficult recovery had been for Selena, 25.
“We went through a depression at the time,” she admitted, explaining she left the decision to go public with Selena’s health struggles to her BFF. “I’ve never had anything personal come out about me before. I’ve dated very famous people, and no one knows because I’m very private. I was like, ‘Did you have to be famous?’”
Francia added that she even kept her operation when she was auditioning for her role on Grown-ish. “It was my very first audition after surgery,” she revealed. “I didn’t tell them. I walked in and was in so much pain. This is two weeks after surgery. I couldn’t open the door.”
Eventually, Selena broke the news of their near-fatal transplant in September, sharing a photo of herself and Francia lying in hospital beds next to each other. At the time, she shared that she had gone under the knife due to complications with Lupus, which she was diagnosed with five years ago.
“It was what I needed to do for my overall health. I honestly look forward to sharing with you, soon my journey through these past several months as I have always wanted to do with you,” the “Wolves” singer wrote. “Until then I want to publicly thank my family and incredible team of doctors for everything they have done for me prior to and post-surgery. And finally, there aren’t words to describe how I can possibly thank my beautiful friend Francia Raisa. She gave me the ultimate gift and sacrifice by donating her kidney to me. I am incredibly blessed. I love you so much sis.”