October 28, 2008

Julianne Hough to Have Surgery

By Gary Strauss

The disabled list grows by the day on ABC hit competition Dancing With the Stars.

In the latest in a series of medical problems to afflict the show's lineup, professional dancer Julianne Hough, 20, has been diagnosed with endometriosis and is scheduled to have an appendectomy today.

Endometriosis is a tissue growth that most often appears on a woman's ovaries or uterus but in 2% to 5% of cases is found on the appendix.

After her dance on last week's show, Hough complained of stomach pains and was briefly hospitalized.

Word of her diagnosis and procedure, called "minor surgery" on her website, juliannehough.com, was posted Monday, just hours before Hough and celebrity partner Cody Linley performed in the latest round of competition.

This season's cast already has lost Olympic gold medalist Misty May-Treanor to a ruptured Achilles tendon, and All My Children star Susan Lucci has been performing on a broken left foot. Brooke Burke has been performing with a bruised right foot, and Hough's brother, Derek, who is paired with Burke, suffered a mild concussion while rehearsing Oct. 4.

Hough guided Olympian Apolo Anton Ohno and race car driver Helio Castroneves to Dancing crowns in Seasons 4 and 5. She released a country music album this year.

Hough told Dancing viewers Monday that "everything's OK" and that she hopes to return next week. If she cannot, Linley will be paired with Dancing pro Edyta Sliwinska.

"Julianne has been a real trouper about this," says Dancing executive producer Conrad Green. "Her doctors say she'll need four or five days (off) if everything goes hunky-dory." (c) Copyright 2008 USA TODAY, a division of Gannett Co. Inc. <>