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North Coast Current

News online for Encinitas, Calif.

North Coast Current

News online for Encinitas, Calif.

North Coast Current

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Encinitas Resident, TV Anchor Barbara-Lee Edwards Off the Air, Recovering after Health Scare

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(L)Barbara-Lee Edwards in the hospital and at home with her dogs (R) (courtesy photos)

Encinitas CA— Encinitas resident Barbara-Lee Edwards, TV news evening anchor on KFMB CBS News 8 for nearly 20 years, has been off the air and recovering at her Encinitas home after a vein burst in her brain during the early hours of Christmas Eve.
“Everyone’s love, support and prayers have been overwhelming in a really good way because they empower me along every day in my recovery,” she said in a recent phone interview.
Edwards’ horrific story begins with the end of the 11 p.m. newscast two days before Christmas.
“I arrived home from work near midnight on Dec. 23 feeling great,” she wrote in a Jan. 7 post on her personal Facebook page. “When I was putting away my clothes I remember bending over slightly and boom! A searing pain hit the top of my head and spread down my neck into my shoulders. The pain was so severe that I got sick several times. A trip to the ER determined I had suffered a brain bleed.
“The whole experience has shaken me to my core but could’ve been so much worse. Because it was a vein that burst, and not an artery, it was not a stroke and my prognosis is promising.”
Edwards, a multiple Emmy award winner, has been at the helm of the CBS News 8 anchor desk since April 2001. Over the past two decades, in addition to her anchor duties, she has reported thousands of health-related news stories. She also has personally been involved in fundraising for Susan G. Komen San Diego’s breast cancer research efforts.
“As a health reporter, I’ve gained a lot of knowledge. So, in my case, I knew something was wrong. I laid down for a while to see if the pain would go away, but it didn’t. So, I went to the (Scripps Encinitas) hospital. They tested me for Covid, which was negative, and they were planning to do a spinal tap for meningitis. But, first, they did a brain scan and discovered the brain bleed. I didn’t even know what that meant.
“In the early hours of Dec. 24, I was transported in an ambulance to Scripps (Memorial Hospital) in La Jolla, where I was the only one in the ICU who was conscious and not on a ventilator with Covid. I was frightened, but the doctors there are excellent.
“They explained to me what happened. Of course, I asked about a timeframe. The neurologist said that it’s going to take some time, so get ready to be bored. Then he said with a smile, `You’ll have time to learn a new language if you want.’”
Edwards said she occasionally deals with fatigue and vision issues, as well as mild brain fog and light headaches. Additional medical tests are expected to clarify recovery details.
Mornings are the best times for short walks, crossword puzzles and dog attention. The family’s two dogs are named Charlotte, a larger dog, and Winnie, a smaller dog. Her new routine also includes an early bedtime compared to late-night TV anchor schedules.
“Now I have to follow the same advice I gave during my TV health reports, such as dial it down, rest, take it one day at a time and be patient,” she said. “But, as you know, journalists are not patient people. I’m doing better every day. It’s going to take a while. I know my situation could have been much worse. I’m very grateful for my family.”
In a Feb. 3 Facebook post, Edwards writes, “Getting back to normal after suffering a brain bleed in the early hours of Christmas Even has been a slow process. But, the neurologists looking after me have assured that’s to be expected.
“I miss my KFMB family, all of whom have been kind, supportive and encouraging. I have also had a lot of beautiful notes from viewers expressing concern, offering prayers and asking when I might return to work. The truth is, it’s just too soon to say. But, getting back behind the anchor desk is my goal and I doing whatever it takes to heal and make that happen.
“Again, as tough as this has been, I have too many things to be grateful for to let it get me down. Thank you.”

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Encinitas Resident, TV Anchor Barbara-Lee Edwards Off the Air, Recovering after Health Scare