August 11, 2008

Olympic Swimmer Postpones Cancer Treatment

A U.S. swimmer diagnosed with testicular cancer has put off surgery until after he's had a chance to compete in his first and last Olympics.

Eric Shanteau of Lilburn, Ga., was diagnosed with cancer in June just one week before he left for the U.S. swim trials, CNN reported Monday.

The Auburn University graduate has the ninth fastest time in the 200 meter breaststroke but is confident he can surprise people beginning with the preliminaries which start Tuesday night in Beijing.

"I can't believe what he is going through," said teammate Dara Torres, "but he still has the drive to be here and do his best. It is an amazing thing to watch."

The National Cancer Institute's Web site says testicular cancer is an extremely treatable disease, especially when caught early.

"It's not unusual for someone to delay getting treatment for several weeks or several months," said Dr. Otis Brawley of the American Cancer Society.