‘DWTS’ pro Derek Hough calls wife’s recovery from emergency skull surgery ‘nothing short of a miracle’

“Dancing with the Stars” pro Derek Hough is proud of his “miracle wife.”

Hough opened up to Fox News Digital about Hayley Erbert’s emergency skull surgery in December and the miraculous recovery that has led her back to the dance studio.

Hough explained that the medical professionals who aided Erbert were looking for more severe, permanent damage after her emergency craniectomy and her cranioplasty a few weeks later, but they couldn’t find anything.

“It’s nothing short of a miracle, honestly,” he said. “Both Hayley and I’ve shared our gratitude towards the medical professionals and everybody that was just so on top of their game and just did the best they could and did an incredible job.”


He also thanked his fans for “the love and support” during this “scary” health journey he was on with his wife. The couple tied the knot in August 2023.

“Hypothetically or even metaphorically, we felt this beautiful energy from everybody, and it was really special,” Hough told Fox News Digital.

The aspect of Erbert’s health journey that has proved to be the biggest struggle for Hough was the memory of those scary moments when everything was uncertain.

“I think that each day there’s a win, there’s a triumph, there’s a step forward. I think the hardest thing is reliving some of those moments. They kind of creep up and pop up in your head. I think they’re so difficult,” he explained.

In December, Erbert became “disoriented” after performing and needed to be hospitalized. She was then diagnosed with a cranial hematoma from a burst blood vessel and required an emergency craniectomy.

According to the Mayo Clinic, “an intracranial hematoma is a collection of blood within the skull. It’s usually caused by a blood vessel that bursts in the brain.”

Hough’s Symphony of Dance Tour, which Erbert joined as a featured dancer, was postponed because of her medical scare. The show resumes April 16 in Tampa, Florida.

“The audience can expect a fast-paced, energetic, just dance spectacle, with athleticism, artistry,” Hough told Fox News Digital. “The music is very dynamic. There are so many different genres of music – everything from big band music to rock ‘n’ roll to old Hollywood to contemporary.

“I think that even if you’re not a fan of dance, you’re going to enjoy the show just based off of the music, the energy that’s created in the room. It really is something special.”

Hough noted there’s a “possibility” his wife will be joining him on stage during his summer tour.

“She’s doing amazing,” he said of Erbert’s recovery.

Erbert recently took to Instagram to share a video of her dancing with Hough while she’s still in recovery. 

“What a blessing (and surprise) it is to be able to be back on stage dancing with my love after such a crazy past four months,” she captioned the video. “My healing journey has been nothing short of extraordinary and being able to dance again is igniting my soul in all the ways; speeding up my recovery even more.”

Hough will travel across the country, dancing in various cities before his Symphony of Dance Tour concludes May 19 in San Diego.