02/10/2014 10:28 am ET | Updated Feb 10, 2014

The Mistake I Made When I Had A Heart Attack, From Rosie O'Donnell (VIDEO)

After surviving a major heart attack in 2012, actress and comedian Rosie O'Donnell had some important tips to share with us about what you should and should not do if you think you’re having a heart attack.

When asked about how important it is for women to prioritize their health, Rosie told us, “I would say don’t wait until you have a heart attack.” She said she had a “willful blindness,” meaning that even though she knew the facts—that 300,000 people a year die of heart disease—she did not ingest the information and proceeded to neglect her own health.

“It’s the number one killer of women in US; more than breast cancer,” she told us. Rosie’s biggest mistake was waiting—almost 50 hours—to call 911. Why did she hesitate? “I was afraid of scaring my kids,” she admitted, also adding that she had a complex about thinking that someone else surely needed an ambulance more than she did. “Women think, ‘I don’t want to bother anyone.’ I was exactly like that,” Rosie said.

Watch Rosie O'Donnell on the ABC Family original series, The Fosters.

For more of Rosie's life and career, see the slideshow below.

Life And Career Of Rosie O'Donnell

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