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The Real Reason Sandra Oh Left Grey's Anatomy

"Grey's Anatomy" has seen many cast members come and go over the course of its 17 seasons, but few of those departures have felt quite as impactful as Dr. Cristina Yang's, played to perfection by Sandra Oh. Oh was one of the original cast members on "Grey's Anatomy." She appeared in the show's 2005 pilot and nearly every episode after it leading up to her departure. Throughout her time on the series, she received some much-deserved acclaim and recognition for her performance as Yang, and her character's bond with Ellen Pompeo's Meredith Grey emerged as one of the series' core relationships.

All that just made Oh's departure in Season 10 of "Grey's Anatomy" that much more emotional for fans of the series, many of whom were disappointed to see the character (and actress) go. Even though it's been almost seven years since Oh made her exit from the series, there are some "Grey's Anatomy" fans who may still be wondering why the actress decided to leave the ABC drama in the first place. Here's that story.

Sandra Oh accomplished everything she wanted to on Grey's Anatomy

Sandra Oh was one of the few original "Grey's Anatomy" cast members still starring on the series when she left it at the end of Season 10. It wasn't an easy decision for Oh to leave the show, either. Speaking with The Hollywood Reporter back in 2013, the actress explained her reasoning for leaving, saying, "Creatively, I really feel like I gave it my all, and I feel ready to let her go." Oh went on to say that she felt it was the right time for both her and the character to leave the series, noting that, "It's such an interesting thing to play a character for so long and to actually get the sense that she wants to be let go as well. [Cristina] wants to be let go, and I am ready to let her go."

While Oh's absence on "Grey's Anatomy" continues to be felt, the actress has maintained an exciting and successful career for herself in the years since her "Grey's" exit. She won awards and received critical recognition for her lead performance on the acclaimed TV spy thriller, "Killing Eve," and recently provided the voice of a character in Disney's "Raya and the Last Dragon." She's also among the core voice cast on Amazon's hit new animated superhero series, "Invincible."

Although, her success after "Grey's Anatomy" probably won't ease the lingering pain of her departure for longtime fans, it's good to know she's still got plenty left in the creative tank.