Claire King would consider euthanasia after being diagnosed with a degenerative condition.
The "Coronation Street" actress suffers from painful rheumatoid arthritis, which has led to her having joints removed, and as she is divorced and has no children, she fears becoming a "burden" for other people so would consider assisted dying if things get worse in the future.
She said: "I do worry about when I'm older and becoming a burden on people around me.
"I can understand why people choose assisted dying - and it's getting to the point where I would consider it myself.
"I'm not going to be hurting any offspring as I haven't got any.
"Most of my family will be gone. It's not a selfish thing. It's a decision at a certain age, when you're becoming a burden to others...
"I worry about not having children. I see how my brother and I try to help out our parents - I haven't got that."
The 54-year-old actress and her brother Piers, 52, currently help care for their disabled parents, multiple sclerosis (MS) sufferer John and Angela, who has severe back problems and also suffers rheumatoid arthritis.
But the former "Emmerdale" star insists she doesn't view her parents as a burden.
She told the Sunday Mirror newspaper: "For the last two years [my dad has] been practically bedridden. He does get in his wheelchair but it's difficult.
"We were all pitching in to look after my dad, and Mum. Now he has to have full-time carers in.
"I still find it kind of odd to call it "caring". It was something we grew up doing - my brother and I didn't know any different."