Anyone who has had cancer, particularly testicular cancer, has likely heard the story of Lance Armstrong. And even if you are just a sports fan, this multiple Tour de France winner garnered plenty of headlines when he was diagnosed at the height of his bicycling career.
Only 25 years of age, Lance Armstrong was at the top of his game with multiple victories and titles. His future seemingly came crashing down when he got the diagnosis of cancer.
Lance learned he had testicular cancer, one of the most common forms in men in the 15 to 35 years of age bracket. When found in its early stages, the cure rate is over 90%.
Unfortunately, Lance did not pay attention to the many early warning signs that this type of cancer exhibits. As a result, his testicular cancer spread to his brain, lung and abdomen. This brought his potential cure rate down significantly.
He was diagnosed with an aggressive form of the disease with over 50% of the cancerous cells being attributed to a type of germ cell cancer called choriocarcinoma and then slightly under 50% being attributed to an embryonal carcinoma. Lance had to undergo several surgeries to remove his affected testicle as well as lesions found on his brain.
After the surgery, he went through several rounds of chemotherapy that was tailored to his particular cancerous appearances. If Lance had paid attention to the warning signs, his testicular cancer would likely have been caught early and it would have not spread beyond the confines of his testicle.
The remarkable part is that Lance never gave up. He used his competitive spirit, support system and superb physical condition to fight the disease. Lance armed himself with as much information as possible so he could make informed decisions and understand his options in regards to treatment. His proactive approach and strong spirit are two major factors in helping him beat the testicular cancer.
As a motivation to others with cancer, he formed the Lance Armstrong Foundation and took it upon himself to become an advocate. Lance felt that his experiences and public recognition would serve him well as a world ambassador to those people around the world who are battling cancer or have just received the diagnosis.
Back to Winning
After cancer treatment, Lance Armstrong went on to win the Tour de France, the most prestigious bicycling event in the world from 1999 to 2005, a remarkable feat for anyone, regardless of cancer survivor status. He realizes that cancer will always be a part of his life and has chosen to “live strong” now his foundation’s primary motto.
Today, Lance Armstrong’s foundation holds numerous events around the world in support of raising cancer awareness as well as funds for cancer research. He brings a lot of attention to cancer by using his celebrity and as a result, has made remarkable strides in the education and awareness of the disease.
You, too, can be a part of the cure for cancer by supporting and participating in events. Just visit the Lance Armstrong Foundation’s website for more details on what you can do in your area.