Inside Alex Trebek's Health Struggles Prior To His Cancer Diagnosis

Before Alex Trebek's tragic passing on Nov. 8, 2020, the Jeopardy! host battled stage 4 pancreatic cancer. He revealed his diagnosis in March 2019 and was met with plenty of support from fans of the show, as well as former contestants and other celebrities. Trebek kept a positive attitude through it all, too, thanking fans for their kind messages and continuing to host Jeopardy!, even as he suffered from depression after the diagnosis.

But the cancer diagnosis wasn't his first health scare. Trebek suffered a heart attack in 2012, and he'd previously suffered a minor heart attack in 2007. Still, Trebek maintained his trademark sense of humor through it all, joking to The Hollywood Reporter in 2014 that the health scares hadn't stopped him from eating "Snickers and a Diet Pepsi" for breakfast.

Here's what fans should know about the late Jeopardy! host's previous health struggles that predated his cancer diagnosis.

Alex Trebek had brain surgery in 2017 following a fall

After suffering two heart attacks, Alex Trebek had another major health scare before he was diagnosed with cancer in 2019. In December 2017, Trebek had brain surgery after suffering a fall. "Some of you may have heard by now that during the holiday break, I had a slight medical problem: a subdural hematoma, blood clots on the brain caused by a fall I endured about two months ago," Trebek said in a video posted to the Jeopardy! YouTube channel in January 2018.

Trebek continued explaining, "Surgery was performed. After two days in the hospital, I came home to start recovery. The prognosis is excellent, and I expect to be back in the studio taping more Jeopardy! programs very, very soon. And I want to thank all of you for your concern." A post explained that Trebek had fallen in October 2017 and was undergoing surgery to address complications from the accident. Sadly, the successful surgery wasn't the last health scare for the game show host, as he was diagnosed with stage 4 cancer just over a year later.

Through it all, though, Trebek maintained that he'd "lived a good life" and wasn't afraid of what the future held. He'll always be a beloved icon in TV history.