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What every cancer patient wants, according to Lance Armstrong
October 27th, 2011
10:41 AM ET

What every cancer patient wants, according to Lance Armstrong

Lance Armstrong has brought attention to cancer through the ubiquitous Livestrong yellow wristbands. But at the same time, his story leaves the “Lance Armstrong effect,” the impression that cancer can be easily defeated and every patient can spring out of bed to achieve great feats much as the seven-time Tour de France winner has.

Dr. David Agus, a cancer expert from University of Southern California, asked Armstrong Wednesday night at TEDMED whether he felt any pressure of being the model of all things going right in cancer treatment.

“It doesn’t go right,” said Armstrong. He responded that every minute, a person in the United States dies from cancer.

And when he meets people living with cancer, the testicular cancer survivor doesn’t dispense advice.

“I don’t say anything,” Armstrong said about when he meets cancer patients.  “They don’t expect Vince Lombardi to come in and give tips.”

Here is what every cancer patient wants, according to Armstrong.

“They want to be heard,” he said.  “They want me to sit there, look at them in the eye and feel their story.”


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Get a behind-the-scenes look at the latest stories from CNN Chief Medical Correspondent, Dr. Sanjay Gupta, Senior Medical Correspondent Elizabeth Cohen and the CNN Medical Unit producers. They'll share news and views on health and medical trends - info that will help you take better care of yourself and the people you love.