‘Today’: Savannah Guthrie Needs More Eye Surgeries – ‘My Eyesight is Not Great

Today anchor Savannah Guthrie announced yesterday that she will be needing more eye surgeries – that’s correct, plural – to correct damage done to her retina in Nov. 2019 after her son accidentally threw a toy in her direction.

Savannah Guthrie
Savannah Guthrie | Michael Hickey/Getty Images

Here’s what we know about the journalist’s announcement and when these surgeries will need to take place.

The accident that caused her eye injury

According to Guthrie, she was at home with her two-year-old son when he accidentally jammed her in the eye with one of his toys. The result was a torn retina.

After the incident in Nov. 2019, Guthrie spoke by phone that week to Today to describe what happened to cause her to stay away from her duties on the morning show.

“I got hit … Charley threw a toy train right at my eye and it tore my retina,” Guthrie explained.

“It happened last week, actually, and then I lost my vision in my right eye about 24 hours later and then it turned out to be kind of serious. They were afraid my retina was detached.”

“The vision is getting better every day, but I’m still blurry,” Guthrie told her co-anchors on Today at that time. “Right now it’s like having one contact (lens) in and (one) out. When it first started though, it was like a complete blur. I couldn’t have seen anything.”

Guthrie had laser treatments and one surgery in December

The 49-year-old reporter in Dec. 2019 had five laser treatment sessions to help heal her retina. Her goal was to not have surgery, which can be risky. And the laser treatments seemed to have done the trick.

“The first laser I actually did I had to go under for, it was kind of an emergency, like they rushed me in there, they shot me up with the big laser, and they were actually not sure it had worked at all, and they thought I was going to have to have this surgery,” the mom of two explained in December.

The laser treatments, unfortunately, weren’t enough. Guthrie began to experience sight loss and she ended up having surgery in Dec. 2019 after all.

“You can’t live with the retina detachment for three weeks, and not expect to start really losing your vision,” Guthrie told Dr. Oz on his show in Jan. 2020. “I was scared. That was the first time I was really scared. I called the surgeon and I said, ‘Now, I’m starting to lose my vision altogether.’ He said, ‘That’s why we’re operating tomorrow.’ ”

She touched on the darker moments of fearing the doctor would discover that her situation was irreversible.

“I tried really hard not to go there and do the parade of horribles and things that could happen that would be devastating,” she told the show host. “You just have to take a deep breath and be grateful for what you have. That for me is the bottom line.”

Guthrie will need even more surgeries

Now four months after her surgery in December, the morning show anchor has continued to experience vision loss and told People yesterday that she will, indeed, need further surgeries.

“My eyesight is not great. I have to have a couple of follow-up surgeries, which is unfortunate but not unexpected.”

For now, however, the Arizona-born Guthrie says that her surgeries will have to wait until the current pandemic situation subsides.

“Eventually I’m hopeful that when everything turns to normal, I’ll be able to schedule those surgeries and I’m hopeful there’ll be a big improvement,” Guthrie continued. “I don’t think my eye will ever be the way it once was, but I think it will be much improved.”

A procedure the mother of two explained that she will have to undergo is cataract surgery.

“When you have this retinal detachment, most people will end up developing cataracts, obviously at a much younger age than would normally be expected,” she said. “When you have cataracts, you get blurry spots and you notice it more and more. So I do.”

“But it’ll be okay. Hopefully by this summer I’ll be able to take care of it and start getting back to a better place.”

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