DENISE Van Outen has revealed she continued skating for 15 hours after dislocating her shoulder because she didn't want to "bother" the NHS.
The 46-year-old dislocated her shoulder and fractured the bone in three places after she took a tumble on the ice last month during rehearsal.
Denise made efforts to continue in the show, even singing live for audiences at home – but the pain proved too much for her and sadly had to resign from the series.
And now the West End star revealed that she spent 15 hours skating with her "unbearable" injury before she went into hospital – because she didn't want to "bother" the NHS, which is dealing with the Covid pandemic.
Discussing her recovery on today's Loose Women, she told the panellists: "I partially dislocated it.
"Unfortunately after the rehearsal I spent 15 hours with my shoulder being dislocated because we didn’t really want to bother the NHS knowing that they’re so overstretched.
"It wasn't until the pain was so unbearable that they advised that I went in to see them and then they put my shoulder back in, but then it popped out again and then I skated on it in the most excruciating pain, I cannot tell you.
"And then after that had an MRI and it was fractured in three parts, so I've got three fractures and a dislocation."
The former Big Breakfast host also explained why she decided to go ahead and perform in week one with her skating partner Matt Evers despite her injury.
The Towie narrator added: "I didn’t want to let Matt down because I love him to bits."
Looking back on her performance, Denise admitted she didn't know how she got through it.
The TV star shared: "I don't even know myself how I did it. I think I'm a bit of an old school theatre entertainer. I took a deep breath and I had to grit my teeth".
After Denise quit the show due to her injury, she was replaced by Olympic athlete Amy Tinkler.
The Sun revealed last month that Denise could return to Dancing on Ice in 2022 after her premature exit.
In an exclusive chat, Denise's skating partner 44-year-old Matt has confirmed that this is a definite possibility, and he'd "love" to join the 46-year-old star on the ice next year instead.
He told us: "There’s been a lot of comment online for 'Denise and Matt 2022', they have never really done that before.
"At this stage we are just looking at next week, but there is a lot of support for Denise to do the show again next year. I would love that.
"That’s because I get along with Denise so well, we just laughed so much."
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