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5-time Olympic Gold Medalist Nathan Adrian Announces Cancer Diagnosis

By Todd Kortemeier | Jan. 24, 2019, 4:45 p.m. (ET)

Nathan Adrian smiles at Swimming Winter National Championships on Nov. 29, 2018 in Greensboro, N.C.


Nathan Adrian has tackled every challenge thrown his way in a stellar swimming career, and plans to bring that same drive and determination in dealing with the cancer diagnosis he announced Thursday on social media.

The five-time Olympic gold medalist and former American 50-meter record holder said that something “didn’t seem quite right” recently, prompting a visit to the doctor.

“After a few tests and visits with a specialist, I unfortunately learned that I have Testicular Cancer,” Adrian wrote. “On the bright side, we caught it early, I have already started treatment and the prognosis is good.”

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The 30-year-old went on to say that he even plans to be back in the pool within a few weeks, with his sights ultimately set on still qualifying for the Olympic Games Tokyo 2020. A public health major at the University of California, Berkeley — where he also was a five-time national champion — Adrian also said he hopes to raise awareness of men’s health issues through his cancer fight.

“I’ve realized that too often we tend to avoid these important topics,” he said, “ignore the potential warning signs, and put off getting the medical help that we may need.”

Adrian holds eight Olympic medals from three appearances, and 32 medals across all major international competitions. He formerly held the American record in the 50-meter freestyle, set in 2015. 

Todd Kortemeier is a sportswriter, editor and children’s book author from Minneapolis. He is a contributor to TeamUSA.org on behalf of Red Line Editorial, Inc.

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Nathan Adrian