Lady Gaga Details Career-Threatening Injury: ‘Nobody Knew I Had A Broken Hip’

'There were giant craters, a hole the size of a quarter,' Gaga reveals about her hip injury.

First, Lady Gaga revealed the artwork for her brand-new single “Applause” to Women’s Wear Daily, and then, in her interview with the mag, she revealed a whole lot more.

Like, for example, the severity of the hip injury that forced her to cancel the Born This Way Ball and put her on the shelf for nearly six months. An initial statement from her camp said she was suffering from “a labral tear of the right hip,” but, according to Gaga, that wasn’t the whole story.

“My injury was actually a lot worse than just a labral tear,” she said. “I had broken my hip. Nobody knew, and I haven’t even told the fans yet. But when we got all the MRIs finished before I went to surgery there were giant craters, a hole in my hip the size of a quarter, and the cartilage was just hanging out the other side of my hip.

“I had a tear on the inside of my joint and a huge breakage,” she continued. “The surgeon told me that if I had done another show I might have needed a full hip replacement. I would have been out at least a year, maybe longer.”

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Gaga told WWD that, while surgery was tough, her recovery was even worse — mostly because she hadn’t gone more than two weeks without performing since she was 14 years old. But she used her time away to reconnect with her Haus of Gaga crew (collaborators Inez van Lamsweerde and Vinoodh Matadin are responsible for the striking “Applause” album art), and, more importantly, revisit her long-in-the-works ARTPOP album.

And, in reconnecting with the album, she was able to not only finish it, but gear up for her triumphant return to the stage … at the 2013 MTV Video Music Awards .

“I had six months to beef up my brain and my body. I got to put a giant white or black sheet of paint over my whole canvas and I got to review ARTPOP again,” she said. “I was given the time to really be creative because it’s a gazing process … I have to gaze into the work for long periods of time for it to be good. I have that feeling, that wonderful feeling, where me, Inez and Brandon [Maxwell] look at each other and we go ‘It’s so good. That’s the one.’”