Photo Credit: Allen Berezovsky/WireImage
Giuliana Rancic has been struggling for years to try to get pregnant with her husband Bill, but recently discovered a reason she needed to put those plans on hold. On Monday, the E! News and Fashion Police host revealed to Today's Ann Curry that she has been found with early stages of breast cancer. (Watch the interview below.)
The 36-year-old star of Style Network's reality show Giuliana and Bill says that during her most recent trip to use in vitro fertilization to try to become pregnant -- which was teased on the show's season finale -- her doctor recommended something a little strange. Rancic says he told her that he refused to consider IVF unless she had a mammogram performed on her.
"This doctor -- the only doctor who's ever said this to me -- said you need a mammogram. And I said, 'Why? I'm 36 years old, why would I need a mammogram? I'm too young.' And he goes, 'I don't care if you're 26, 36, I will not get you pregnant if possibly the small risk that you have cancer, because if you get pregnant, it will accelerate the cancer,'" Rancic explains.
After being dragged "kicking and screaming" to get the mammogram, Rancic says she was shocked to discover something actually was wrong. "They called me the next day and said, 'We need you to come back, we see something.' And I remember where I was when I heard that. I was driving to work and it was just a kick in the stomach and I knew something was wrong," she says.
Rancic ended up following through with her plan and flew to Colorado anyways to do the first step in IVF, the retrieval of her eggs. But her doctor told her that she couldn't proceed past that point with this attempt to get pregnant until after her cancer has been removed.
The most shocking part of the experience for Rancic was that she has no family history of breast cancer and does not have the breast cancer gene. She admits that an aunt did have breast cancer, but ended up surviving and is now fine. Rancic believes she will pull through as well because she caught the cancer early.
"I think a lot of us (women) think we're invincible," Rancic cautions her fellow women. "If you can just find it early, you can be okay. I will be okay because I found it early."
Rancic has a surgery planned for later this week to remove the cancer, and then will receive radiation for the next six-and-a-half weeks. The E! News host says she believes this is a part of God's master plan, and an explanation for why IVFs haven't worked for her up until this point. If she had gotten pregnant earlier, it likely would have accelerated her cancer and could even have caused her to die. Once Rancic gets a clean bill of health from her doctor, she plans to continue trying to get pregnant.
"I'm not giving up. I want that baby," she says. "What's amazing is that baby saved my life."