ABC News(NEW YORK) — Fans know Sarah Hyland for her role on ABC's Modern Family, which is in its 10th and penultimate season, but the star is also opening up about her health, with plenty of behind-the-scenes support.
The 28-year-old actress stopped by Good Morning America on Friday and opened about her health struggles months after revealing she's had 16 surgeries including two kidney transplants.
"You have to actively stay positive throughout things," Hyland told GMA. "It can take a toll on your mental health and on your body, but as long as you surround yourself with the right people and stay positive … I'm good."
Hyland was born with kidney dysplasia, which she told Self magazine in December forced her to live a life where she says she was "always having to be looked after, having to be cared for."
Her kidneys eventually went into failure, and her father gave her one of his in 2012.
But the following year, after her body began to reject the new kidney, she went under dialysis and another transplant, this time from her younger brother.
"Most of the surgeries that I had were before I was 4, so at least that's kind of a distant memory," Hyland said on GMA. "Surrounding myself with my friends, this sisterhood that I have with these girls is amazing, and also dogs are the greatest thing ever to happen in the entire world."
Hyland said working on a comedic show like Modern Family has also helped boost her spirits.
"You have to compartmentalize everything, and being at work is just so amazing to me because it's what I love. I've been doing it for 24 years now," she added. "The cast is amazing, the crew is amazing. We're in our 10th season now and most of our crew members have been with us since day one, so I've really grown up with these people.
"They always can tell when I'm not feeling well," Hyland said. "Even our props guy [will say], 'I'm here if you need anything.' They've been really amazing to me.'"
On the show, Hyland's character Haley is pregnant with twins. When asked to compare Haley's parenting style to another character on the show, she landed on Claire.
"I think it would be great for the story line if Haley kind of turns into her mom, because who doesn't turn into their mother?" Hyland said. "I feel like that would be amazing to see Haley turn into Claire."
As for her dream special guest, Hyland said she wishes Carol Burnett would appear on Modern Family.
"She's just one of the mothers of comedy," she said.
Copyright © 2019, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.