Giuliana Rancic: Recovering from Breast Surgery "Was Hell"

The E! News host opens up about the tough times that followed her recent double mastectomy

Giuliana Rancic has been incredibly resilient throughout her breast cancer ordeal, tweeting upbeat messages to her fans and taking hardly any time away from work. But in a recent visit to Today, the E! News host admitted that recovering from her most recent surgical procedure (a double mastectomy and reconstructive surgery) was no picnic. Watch the video below.

In a sit-down with Today's Matt Lauer, Giuliana and hubby Bill Rancic discussed the harsh realities of recovering from breast surgery.

"I knew this was going to be a tough surgery, and I in no way want to minimize it," said Giuliana. "I'm two-and-half weeks out, and up to a week and a half ago, it was hell. It was horrible."

Rancic elected to have a double mastectomy and reconstruction after her first surgery, a double lumpectomy, failed to completely eliminate the cancer. Following the surgery, she was on morphine for the pain, but the morphine made her sick to her stomach, and vomiting only made the pain worse. She eventually chose to forgo the drugs and face the pain head-on. In two weeks, she returned to her job at E! -- but says she hasn't exactly bounced back.

"I feel great considering, but I really have a ways to go when it comes to the recovery," Giuliana admitted.

While Rancic's commitment to a speedy recovery is admirable, there's some concern that she's setting an unrealistic example for other cancer patients. Is two weeks too soon to return to work after major surgery?

"We don't do anything without the doctor's approval," explained Bill. "This was something she was intent on doing."

"I had a goal to go back to work this week," Giuliana clarified. "But if I couldn't have made it, I would have gone back the next week or the week after. But it helps to have a goal... I think it helped me heal quicker."

Giuliana told People this weekend that she's "getting stronger every day," although she still has trouble getting out of bed or putting on a seatbelt without assistance. You wouldn't have known it, however, if you were watching the Rancics joyfully ring in the New Year in Times Square.

"What a difference a year makes," Bill told People on New Year's Eve. "our goal is to really live in the present -- to enjoy life."

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