Sharon Stone has said her ''greatest achievement'' has been turning 60, after brain bleed left her fearing she'd never make it to 50.

The 'Basic Instinct' star reached the milestone age on March 10, and has hailed her birthday as her proudest moment as after suffering a horrific health scare 17 years ago, she wasn't sure she would survive to reach 50, let alone celebrate her 60th birthday.

She said: ''I never guessed I'd be happy turning 60. Let's be real, it's old. But it's the greatest achievement for me because there was a time I wasn't sure if I'd make it to 50.

''I had a brain bleed and stroke which lasted nine days. They gave me a 5 percent chance of survival. It wasn't diet or lifestyle. Sometimes the brain malfunctions and mine malfunctioned in a big way.''

Sharon was struck down with a headache in 2001 and despite being in agony, it took three days before she was taken to hospital in San Francisco.

When she arrived, she claims doctors tried to send her home because they thought she was ''acting'', but exploratory surgery revealed there was so much blood inside her skull it had forced her brain forwards into her face.

The 'Casino' actress lost a fifth of her weight whilst in hospital and it took her body two years to absorb the blood that had leaked into her skull.

She added: ''When I got home it affected my left ear, I couldn't hear anything. I couldn't feel anything in my left leg. I was blind in one eye then I went completely blind temporarily. Completely black.

''It was like my senses were shutting down. I couldn't write my name for three years. I was lucky to be alive but the odds of my body restoring itself to full health were very small.

''When I was at the hospital they had missed that an artery to my brain had switched course and was affecting my nerves. Once that was corrected I was on the road to recovery. But it was a long road.

''My sight came back, my hearing came back, although it drops out every now and then. I had to relearn everything, pretty much, to read, write and speak.

''It took a very long time. I had to learn to live again, it was an overwhelming challenge.''

Sharon still struggles with the longterm effects of her condition, but is back on her feet and acting again, which she considers a ''huge win''.

Speaking to the Daily Mirror newspaper, she said: ''I had a photographic memory but that's gone now. And I take medication every night to prevent new strokes in the brain. But the fact I'm acting again, and not just in small roles, is a huge win.''