Sheen in rehab after latest hospital stay

Actor Charlie Sheen was back in rehab and production of American TV's most popular comedy, Two and a Half Men, was on hold, one day after a person who called emergency services said the actor was intoxicated and in pain.

According to a person familiar with the emergency call placed on Thursday, one of Sheen's neighbours told an emergency operator that the actor was "intoxicated" and complaining of abdominal and chest pains.

Copies of the call probably will not be ready for release by the Los Angeles Fire Department until Monday, a department spokesman said.

Sheen, 45, was taken to a Los Angeles area hospital and was there until around midnight on Thursday, said his publicist, Stan Rosenfield, who cited the actor's history of hernia problems.

Rosenfield said yesterday that Sheen was in rehab, but he did not say why.

"Charlie Sheen has voluntarily entered an undisclosed rehabilitation centre today," the spokesman said. "He is most grateful to all who have expressed their concern."

The terse statement noted that no additional information will be provided and asked that Sheen's privacy be respected.

CBS, production company Warner Bros. Television and executive producer Chuck Lorre said in a joint statement that Sheen's rehab has prompted a halt on production of Two and a Half Men.

"We are profoundly concerned for his health and well-being, and support his decision," the companies and Mr Lorre said.

Sixteen of the show's 24-episode season have been taped, with 14 aired so far.

The latest fall-out from Sheen's chaotic life came two weeks after CBS' top entertainment executive said the actor's off-camera actions have not affected his work as the star of his hit sitcom, the centrepiece of CBS' Monday comedy line-up.

Sheen's headline-making behaviour has included a wild night that left a New York hotel room in shambles and sent him to a hospital, and a guilty plea last summer to assaulting his wife in Aspen, Colorado.

Sheen filled gossip pages again this month by spending a weekend partying in Las Vegas.

His latest admission to hospital was his third in as many months. It came after an emergency call made on Sheen's behalf by neighbour Dr Paul Nassif.