Giuliana Rancic, the reality star, E! red carpet host, author and voice behind the health newsletter FabFitFun, announced that she’s battling breast cancer on NBC’s Today show this morning. She says she discovered her early stage cancer through her efforts to get pregnant—she and her husband, Bill Rancic, have been open about their infertility and attempts to conceive using IVF—and plans to get surgery and receive chemotherapy.
At 36, Rancic says she wasn’t planning to screen for breast cancer at all until she was 40, but received her first mammogram under the advice of her doctors:
Through my attempt to get pregnant for the third time, we sadly found out that I have early stages of breast cancer. It’s been a shock. A lot of people have been asking, we saw that you went and got IVF, are you pregnant? But sadly, we’ve had to put that off. [...] I went into the hospital in LA, when they came in to tell me, they said it pretty quickly, they just said, ‘I’m sorry, you have breast cancer.’ It’s what you expect, but so much more, it was like, incredible instant sobbing and the world just crashed down around me. I couldn’t believe it – 36 years old, no family history? I couldn’t believe it
She says that she was shocked by her test results, but says “I will be okay, because I found it early,” and urges other women to take self-exams and screening seriously, explaining:
I think a lot of us think we’re invincible. But we have to start putting ourselves on the to-do list. I just want women out there to know if you can just find it early, you’ll be OK. I found it early.
For more inspiring women who’ve shared their battle with breast cancer in the spotlight, check out our gallery of celebrity breast cancer survivors who give back.