Al Roker, the beloved weatherman, has been missing from TV due to a severe health scare involving blood clots in his thigh that moved to his lungs, requiring hospitalization. In a heartfelt tweet, Roker expressed his current path to recovery and appreciation for the care he’s received, along with gratitude for the well-wishes from fans.
Colleagues from the “Today” show, including Hoda Kotb, Dylan Dryer, Craig Melvin, and Savannah Guthrie, publicly extended their support, noting Roker’s high spirits.
Two months after his hospital stay for the clots, Roker returned to the “Today” show. In a interview alongside his wife, Deborah Roberts, they described his ordeal as “frightening” and “the scariest journey,” revealing the seriousness of his condition, which at one point was uncertain even to doctors.
Al Roker, TODAY’s beloved weatherman, returned to the show this month after several weeks away due to health issues including blood clots, possibly due to having COVID-19 in September, and internal bleeding. Now he and his wife, Deborah Roberts, are sharing more about the ups and downs of Al’s time in the hospital, his recovery progress and how their family helped each other stay positive.
Deborah called the experience “the worst roller coaster ride you have ever been on” in an appearance alongside her husband on Maria Shriver’s digital series, “Conversations Above the Noise with Maria.”
Deborah explained that Al was “in a state of depletion” because he wasn’t able to eat that often while in the hospital in case his medical team needed to run tests. And although he wasn’t in excruciating pain, he “was in a lot of discomfort. His veins were beginning to collapse. They couldn’t find veins after a while,” she said.
At one point, his family “really did think we were going to lose him,” Deborah recalled. His medical team was struggling to find the source of his internal bleeding and blood clots, and “as long as the mystery existed, we were on pins and needles,” she said.
But these days, after he endured a seven-hour surgery and two stays in the hospital to treat the issues, Al is doing well and back on TODAY. For now, he’s doing physical therapy almost every day to rebuild his strength, and he’s still taking blood thinners.
During he first day back to TODAY on Jan. 6, Al was asked by co-host Dylan Dreyer whether “everything is fixed” regarding his health, and he replied, “As best we know.” He then joked that it seems like he needs a “tuneup” once a year and that some treatment for his knee is “coming up.”
“I’m a shriveled husk,” he laughed. “You’ve got to monitor all of that stuff. … Getting back (to work) is tonic, as well.”