‘High School Musical’ Series Star Almost Died of Heart Failure

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High School Musical Disney+

Credit: Disney

A star of the popular Disney+ series High School Musical: The Musical: The Series recently revealed that he almost died of multiple medical issues that he didn’t know he had.

High School Musical: The Musical: The Series
Credit: Disney

Joshua Bassett, who plays Ricky Bowen in the series, sat down for an interview with GQ and spoke about a number of things — including the potentially fatal illnesses that landed the actor, who is only 20 years old, in the hospital.

olivia rodrigo
Credit: Disney+

Bassett revealed that he started feeling incredibly sick just two days after his costar Olivia Rodrigo’s hit song “Driver’s License” was released, and he was hospitalized the day his song “Lie Lie Lie” was released.

Two days after the song was released, he “started getting very ill, and it kept getting worse,” he says. “I thought it was, like, food poisoning or whatever. It got worse, it got worse, it got worse, it got worse”—until he was hospitalized with “unimaginable pain” on the day “Lie Lie Lie” was released. He’s slightly vague on the cause of all this—although, he says, “I’m sure stress had a part in it”—but it turned out to be septic shock and heart failure: “[The doctors] told me that I had a 30% chance of survival. They told me that if I had not checked into the hospital within 12 hours, I would have been found [dead] in my apartment.” While social media gossiped, Bassett “didn’t have any energy to be able to focus on anything but staying alive.”

Joshua Bassett High School Musical
Credit: Disney

The High School Musical: The Musical: The Series star shared a video of himself in the hospital, in seemingly good spirits, despite how ill he actually was.

welp… not the first place i assumed i’d be on my Lie Lie Lie release day… the ER!! (before you ask, no it’s not covid.) after an unknown, uncomfortable feeling turned into, times 10, the worst pain of my life, i figured i’d just try to sleep. after multiple, very very ugly days and nights, i had no choice today but be taken to the hospital. i’d like to say thank you!!!! for all the support on the song!!! i’ve been doing what i can today to stay involved. had my first surgery tonight ! gonna rest at the hospital and the doctors will see what they see in the morn!
much love to all!

(p.s.the doctors here are the sweetest, most professional people in the ?. they’ve made me feel very safe!)

(p.P.s. according to the doc, i now have the medal for “the sickest patient in the hospital.” how cool!!!)

For those who are unfamiliar with the illness, sepsis is a potentially fatal condition that occurs when your body is fighting an infection, but the infection-fighting process turns on your body and can cause your organs to fail and shut down. While Bassett has not shared exactly what caused his septic shock and heart failure, he believes that stress most likely played an important part in it.

Joshua Bassett High School Musical Series
Credit: Disney

Thankfully, Bassett is feeling strong and healthy again after the frightening ordeal. He is active on both Instagram and TikTok and is continuing to make music and live his best life. You can continue to watch him star as Ricky in Season 2 of High School Musical: The Musical: The Series on Disney+.

Join us in sending positive thoughts to Joshua Bassett that he continues to stay strong and healthy! 

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