What's with the crutches? fans of Kelly Ripa have been wondering.

No, there's no connection to the South Jersey girl's ad campaigns for Cooper University Hospital, or its Ripa Center for Women's Health & Wellness in Voorhees, where she attended Eastern High.

Nor does it have to do with her finally learning to ride a bicycle in July.

The question was among the Top 20 "hot searches" this morning, according to Google Trends, but well back of the likes of Kumari Fulbright (beauty queen sent to prison for kidnapping and torturing her ex-boyfriend) and Sylvie Cachay (swimsuit designer found dead).

We're only talking crutches here.

Turns out that the All My Children star turned Live With Regis & Kelly cohost simply has a stress fracture of the femoral neck - the part of the femur, or thigh bone, just below the end that connects to the hip.

The prescription: no exercise - three to six weeks of rest, she said during the show.

"Oh my, that's going to kill you," said cohost Regis Philbin.

"I don't need any surgery," said Ripa, who turned 40 in October. "I don't need anything special done. I just need to sit."

Last month, the Stratford-born Phillies fan was honored by the Broadcast Pioneers of Philadelphia as their person of the year at a soldout ceremony.

Last year, her father, Joseph, was elected Camden County clerk.

Contact staff writer Peter Mucha at 215-954-4342 or pmucha@phillynews.com.