LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - Oscar-winning actress Elizabeth Taylor has been admitted to a Los Angeles hospital to treat congestive heart failure, the latest in a long history of serious medical problems.
Taylor, 78, was admitted to Cedars-Sinai Medical Center earlier this week for what her publicist said on Friday was “an ongoing condition.”
“Elizabeth Taylor was hospitalized earlier this week ... suffering from symptoms caused by congestive heart failure, an ongoing condition. This issue is being addressed ... She is currently being kept in the hospital for monitoring,” Sally Morrison said in a statement
Taylor, a double Oscar winner famous for her eight marriages — twice to actor Richard Burton — underwent heart surgery in 2009 to replace a leaky valve.
She announced in 2004 that she had been diagnosed with congestive heart failure — a condition in which the heart cannot pump enough blood to other organs.
“Her family and close friends are appreciative of the warm support and interest of her loyal fans but have asked that people respect her privacy and allow her medical team the time and space to focus on restoring her back to health,” the statement said.
The London-born Taylor, who won Oscars for her roles in “Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf” in 1966 and “Butterfield 8” in 1960, has been using a wheelchair for more than five years to cope with chronic pain after breaking her back four times.
In 2006, she appeared on Larry King’s CNN interview show to deny reports that she was gravely ill or suffering from Alzheimer’s disease.
Taylor has had three hip-replacement operations, a benign brain tumor, skin cancer and pneumonia. She spent two stints in rehab in the 1980s for alcohol and prescription drug addiction.
Taylor first achieved stardom at the age of 12 in “National Velvet” and became famous for her violet eyes, dark alluring beauty and love of diamonds.
She still makes appearances at charity events, especially those connected to her AIDS foundation, but has not appeared on screen since the 2001 TV movie “Old Broads”. Her last Hollywood movie performance was the 1994 live action comedy “The Flintstones”.
Additional reporting by Steve Gorman and Alex Dobuzinskis; Editing by Philip Barbara