On October 2, 1996, at age 25, Armstrong was diagnosed with nonseminomatous testicular cancer. The cancer had spread to his lungs, abdomen and brain.
The treatment regimen:
The standard chemotherapeutic regimen is BEP (Bleomycin, Etoposide and Cisplatin (or Platinol). Armstrong, however, chose an alternative, VIP (Etoposide, Ifosfamide, and Cisplatin), to avoid the lung toxicity associated with the drug Bleomycin. Armstrong had surgery on his brain tumors, which were necrotic, and an orchiectomy to remove his diseased testicle. After his surgery his doctor admitted that he had had less than a 50% survival chance.
I wonder if a government health program would have been so flexible.
Or would Lance Armstrong have received a couple of prescriptions for pain pills and the affected bureaucratic sympathy in a form letter?