Ruby Rose was stunned to learn she needed emergency surgery to avoid paralysis because she thought she'd broken a rib.

The 33-year-old actress revealed earlier this week that she'd been hospitalised due to two herniated discs and has now admitted she spent weeks with ''chronic pain'' thinking stunt work had caused a much less severe injury.

Speaking on 'The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon', she said: ''So, I did a stunt for a very extended amount of time, like seven hours, and we thought that I'd broken a rib, or just fractured a rib and that was, like, six to 12 weeks of healing.

!So, then I had six to 12 weeks of chronic pain and was just assuming that that's what it was... I kept seeing these doctors and they said, 'It's your neck, it's your neck. It just radiates into these places because of nerve endings.'

''I finally got an MRI and... and basically he called me and was like, 'You could become a paraplegic.

'''This is your spine. Two of your discs have herniated. And they've broken all of the protective layers. You have this tiny amount where your spine is not severed and if you don't get back, you could become a paraplegic.' ''

The 'Batwoman' actress is thankful that she was financially secure enough to fund the surgery because her insurance didn't fund it and she's aware others aren't so fortunate.

She added: ''It got me thinking about a lot of things.

''Like, for instance, how do people pay for the surgery if they need it? What happens if someone has the same diagnosis as me but they don't have insurance and they can't get the surgery? It's not a cheap surgery. And they have to just live with not knowing if they're going to become a paraplegic? It was kinda terrifying.

''And then I discovered that my insurance didn't pay for it! And I was like, 'Wait a minute, this is America. But at least I had the funds to pay... I appreciate everything.''