Comedian Heather McDonald was hospitalized after collapsing onstage during a show in Tempe, Arizona Saturday night. During an Instagram Story video from her hospital bed, McDonald, 51, showed off a swollen eye. The cause of the medical emergency remains unknown.
McDonald was delivering the second joke of her sold-out show when she passed out, TMZ reports. “I’m vaxxed, double vaxxed, boosted… and flu shot and shingle shot and haven’t gotten COVID and Jesus loves me most,” she joked just before falling to the stage floor. At first, everyone thought this was part of her act, but it quickly became clear that it was not.
An EMT and a nurse just happened to be in the theater, so they snapped into action. The two jumped onto the stage to give McDonald first aid. Someone called 911 to report a seizure, but it is not clear what happened. McDonald told TMZ she felt dizzy before collapsing and this never happened before.
McDonald decided against taking an ambulance to the hospital. Instead, her sister-in-law drover her, she told TMZ. She had a CT scan and several other tests, but it is still not clear what the cause was. She said her head still hurts and she feels very tired. McDonald has not had COVID and is fully vaccinated, she said.
Later, McDonald explained the situation in an Instagram Story video. “So I’m in the emergency room. I look weird. I’m so so so so sorry,” she said, reports Page Six. “I passed out on stage. I got up, I did one joke and I felt so dizzy.” McDonald pointed to her bruised eye, then told fans she would have to cancel at least her second show in Tempe. She was scheduled for a three-night stand. McDonald will have time to rest before her next scheduled shows, as she isn’t performing again until late March in Los Angeles, according to her website.
McDonald is best known for her work as a writer and roundtable regular on Chelsea Lately with Chelsea Handler. She also has a stand-up special, Heather McDonald: I Don’t Mean to Brag, now available to stream on Amazon Prime Video with an XLTV subscription. She also starred in White Chicks and made appearances in the shows Frasier and Reno 911!. McDonald also hosts the Juicy Scoop podcast.
McDonald’s former collaborator, Handler, was also recently rushed to the hospital. Handler was forced to postpone two shows in Oregon last week after she was received medical care in Seattle. Handler hasn’t said what the cause was, but she told fans she does not have COVID.