January 5, 2018 / 4:40 AM / 15 days ago

'Jeopardy' host Alex Trebek on medical leave, plans to return 'very soon'

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - “Jeopardy” host Alex Trebek is taking a break from taping episodes of the U.S. television quiz show to recover from surgery to remove blood clots on the brain, he said in a video message released on Thursday.

“The prognosis is excellent and I expect to be back in the studio taping more ‘Jeopardy’ programs very, very soon,” Trebek, seated in what appeared to be a living room, said in the video.

The syndicated program “Jeopardy” is viewed by 23 million people each week, making it the top-rated quiz show on U.S. television.

Jeopardy television game show host Alex Trebek speaks on stage during the 40th annual Daytime Emmy Awards in Beverly Hills, California June 16, 2013. REUTERS/Danny Moloshok/File photo

Trebek’s medical leave of absence is not expected to affect the broadcast schedule for the show, which is taped months in advance. The only change will be to the program’s College Championship, which will air in April, the “Jeopardy” show said in a statement. It had previously been set for broadcast in February.

Trebek, 77, fell and hit his head in October, the “Jeopardy” statement said, and was admitted on Dec. 15 to Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles due to complications from the fall. He underwent surgery to remove a subdural hematoma on Dec. 16 and spent Christmas at home with his family, the statement said.

Trebek, who is from a nickel-mining town in Ontario, Canada, suffered a heart attack in 2012 and was hospitalized for another in 2007.

“Jeopardy” is produced by Sony Pictures Television Sony, a division of Sony Corp, and distributed by a division of CBS Corp.

Reporting by Alex Dobuzinskis; Editing by Richard Borsuk

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