Patriots left tackle Nate Solder told ESPN that he was diagnosed with testicular cancer in April 2014 and underwent surgery. Solder told ESPN that he is working to raise awareness for testicular cancer, as April is National Testicular Cancer Awareness month.
Solder said he spoke with team doctors during a mandatory physical in April 2014 and they ordered an ultrasound that would provide the diagnosis. Solder and the doctors were proactive in catching the disease early on and the testicle was surgically removed before the disease spread.
Solder missed some offseason activities while recovering from his surgery last season, but was able to play all 16 regular season games, as well as all three playoff games for the Patriots. Solder told ESPN he has checkups every three months to monitor his situation, but he’s received nothing but good news in his recovery.
According to the National Cancer Institute, testicular cancer is one of the most common forms of cancer in men ages 15-34. The American Cancer Society estimates about one in every 270 men will be diagnosed with the disease. Other notable athletes who are testicular cancer survivors include Lance Armstrong, Mike Lowell, John Kruk and Phil Kessel.
Marcus Cannon, Solder’s teammate on the Patriots offensive line, is also a cancer survivor; he was diagnosed with non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma in 2011. Former Red Sox pitcher Jon Lester is also a non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma survivor.