Following a four-week hospital stay in November, Al Roker left Today for two months before coming back on Friday morning.
After a health concern brought on by a blood clot in his leg that broke up into smaller clots and finally went to his lungs, the weatherman focused his entire concentration on his rehabilitation.
Roker explained the clots were an unfortunate after effect of undergoing COVID-19 in September, which was worsened by internal bleeding, during his comeback program. He said, “I lost half my blood.” They were looking for it and attempting to locate it.
During one visit, the medical staff at the New York-Presbyterian/Weill Cornell Medical Center found two bleeding ulcers. Roker said that surgeons had to remove his gallbladder, reshape a portion of his small intestine, and resection his colon. “I went in for one procedure, I got four free,” he chuckled.
Putting jokes aside, the cherished Today team member thought about the seriousness of the medical problem he had encountered. According to everyone of my physicians, things may have turned out differently if I hadn’t been in the condition I was in at the time, he added.
Roker’s gastroenterologist, Dr. Felice H. Schnoll-Sussman, told Today that the doctors treating him were “extraordinarily worried” and that his situation was “life-threatening.”
Deborah Roker, who is Roker’s wife, also made a guest appearance on the program to discuss his rehabilitation. He is a real-life miracle, she declared. “He truly is, and I have to say, Al was a very, very sick man. I don’t believe I’m overstating it. And I believe that most people were unaware of that.
He was a medical enigma for weeks, she said. The trip was the most chaotic and terrifying one we’ve ever taken.
When asked about Roker’s absence from the annual Rockefeller Center Christmas tree lighting ceremony, Kotb told viewers that he had been temporarily hospitalized for the clots and was discharged before having to be readmitted owing to “some problems.” For the first time in 27 years, he also missed the Thanksgiving Day parade broadcast.
“For each week you spend in the hospital, you lose a certain percentage of muscle mass. In order to recover, I spent four weeks in the hospital, Roker said. “There’s only a little bit of frailty. Every day, I engage in both physical and occupational therapy. I simply need to regain my strength.
Roker said, “I prepared supper last night. I’m feeling better every day. It just seems like a little bit of a slog to me. I am incredibly lucky and grateful to have the resources I have, however many people have a lot more to cope with and a lot less.