Entertainment Tonight sat down with Gabrielle Carteris Thursday morning in New York City for the actress's only television interview, to air on Thursday, March 6th and Friday, March 7th.
Carteris tells ET about the life-changing injury that occurred in 2006 while she was shooting a scene for a TV movie, "We were filming an attack scene. I remember being pulled up by my chin over and over again." The 5'1" Carteris was working with a 6'6" tall actor in a scene which was "not properly rehearsed" and included 4-5 hours of being dragged down a set of stairs.
According to Carteris, the symptoms began almost immediately, "I was jerking around, I lost my speech and was having spasms. My face was doing wild things and I couldn't feel my hands and was having headaches." She says she took two days off and when she returned, "was crying and in so much pain." Eventually, Carteris did not return to the set and her role was reshot with another actress.
Recovery has been long and difficult for Carteris, "Sometimes I look in the mirror and cry. Sometime I look and laugh." Carteris says for an entire year she did not attend any public events. Today her condition is managed with acupuncture, physical therapy and Klonopin three times a day.
Carteris says she is coming forward to set an example for her daughters and to send a message to others that it is ok to speak out, "I refuse to be the victim. At one point I thought this would be for life. My life changed in a moment."