It is unclear how long he will be out in the 50-50 split Senate, but the chamber is in recess next week until the week of July 11.
Leahy, 82, was born blind in one eye and has had a “lifelong struggle with reduced depth perception,” his office said in a statement.
“He has taken some remarkable dingers over the years but this one finally caught up with him,” his office said.
Leahy is expected to make a full recovery from his surgery and will start physical therapy immediately, his office said.
His office told CNN that it’s too early to know how long his doctors will suggest he remain away from the Senate. His absence would make it difficult for Democrats to pass anything using a simple majority that at least one Republican senator won’t vote for.