Lance Armstrong is a world-famous American athlete who won the Tour de France a historic seven times. Though Lance Armstrong is best known for his bicycle racing achievements, he is also well known for overcoming cancer. What kind of cancer did Lance Armstrong have?
Lance Armstrong’s seventh win of the Tour de France was record-breaking as was his sixth win. Other than Lance Armstrong, four cyclists in the history of the Tour de France have won the race five times. Winning the race seven consecutive times was legendary. People have compared Lance Armstrong’s tenacity in racing with his battle with cancer.
Lance Armstrong sought medical attention when pain kept him off his bike. When Lance Armstrong was diagnosed with testicular cancer in 1996, the cancer was already in an advanced stage. Lance Armstrong was diagnosed with sixty percent choriocarcinoma, forty percent embryonal, and less than one percent teratoma cancer.
His chance of survival was less than fifty percent. The cancer had spread to the lungs and brain. Survival was obviously the primary concern, but as a professional athlete, Lance Armstrong was concerned about losing lung capacity from cancer treatment.
He had to have brain surgery to remove the cancerous lesions in the brain. The lesions were small and the surgery was successful. He also had testicular surgery. Lance Armstrong’s cancer treatments included chemotherapy which not only successfully eradicated the cancer, but saved his lung capacity. Lance Armstrong’s cancer went into complete remission approximately a year and a half after his diagnosis.
It wasn’t long before he returned to racing. Prior to the cancer, Lance Armstrong was already a world class cyclist. In 1998, Lance Armstrong raced in the Vuelta de Espana and finished in fourth place. He won his first Tour de France in 1999. He went on to win the Tour de France six more times.
He has retired from professional cycling. He promotes a message of hope and empowerment. One tool he has used to promote this message is the Livestrong brand that he developed with a partnership with Nike. His foundation, The Lance Armstrong Foundation, joined forces with Demand Media to develop Livestrong.com, a website dedicated to health and fitness.
He has focused his cycling participation as a tool used to increase cancer awareness. Lance Armstrong has continued to participate in cycling events to promote a Global Cancer Campaign. In the 2009 Tour de France, he finished in third place.