Katie Couric was diagnosed with breast cancer after having a mammogram and biopsy in June 2022. The 65-year-old found out her diagnosis on June 21, 2022, the day of her 8th wedding anniversary with John Molner. “I felt sick and the room started to spin,” Katie wrote in an essay on Katie Couric Media about how she felt at that moment.
Katie was told by her doctor that her “tumor is hormone receptor-positive, Her2neu-negative and highly treatable, particularly if it was detected early.” The former TODAY Show co-host underwent a lumpectomy and radiation. She will have to take an aromatase inhibitor for the next 5 years.
She told her daughters, Ellie and Carrie, 4 days after she found out about her breast cancer. “I tried to be as reassuring as Dr. Newman. Their faces froze in disbelief. Then shock. Then they began to cry,” Katie revealed. “‘Don’t worry,’ I told Carrie then Ellie, ‘I’m going to be fine,’ trying to convince myself as well as them. They’d already lost one parent. The idea of losing another was unfathomable.”
Katie’s beloved first husband, Jay Monahan, died from colon cancer in 1998 at just 42. Her sister, Emily Couric, died of pancreatic cancer at 54, and her mother-in-law, Carol, died of ovarian cancer.
The tumor that was extracted from Katie’s breast was “bigger” than the doctors expected. The tumor was “roughly the size of an olive.” However, the tumor size didn’t change the staging of her cancer, which was 1A. Katie’s Oncotype, the likelihood of her cancer returning, is 19, so she doesn’t have to undergo chemotherapy.
The journalist started radiation on September 7. She underwent her final round of radiation on September 27, 2022. “My left breast does look like I’ve been sunbathing topless, but other than that, I’ve felt fine,” she said.
Katie ended her essay with a plea to women everywhere: “Please get your annual mammogram. I was six months late this time. I shudder to think what might have happened if I had put it off longer. But just as importantly, please find out if you need additional screening.”