Famed Pianist Van Cliburn Has Advanced Cancer

Van Cliburn battling advanced bone cancer

/ Author:  / Reviewed by: Joseph V. Madia, MD

(RxWiki News) Van Cliburn - the famed pianist - has advanced bone cancer that was diagnosed just days ago.

He's 78 and receiving 24-hour care in his home, where spokesman, Mary Lou Falcon, says he's "resting comfortably" and in good spirits.

"If you experience bone pain, talk to your doctor."

Cliburn burst on the stage when he won the International Tchaikovsky Competition in Moscow in 1958.

This startlingly good looking young man from the tiny east Texas town of Kilgore became an overnight sensation. He performed concerts, made records and had a fan club that rivaled Elvis's.

He was sort of that era's David Bowie in looks. It's said he caused riots when spotted on the street.

So what is advanced bone cancer? Honestly, it's not a good one - as no advanced cancer is.

We don't know if it's the result of the spread of another cancer, or originated somewhere in his bones. So we can't say too much about the exact nature of his disease.

We do know that just less than 3,000 Americans are diagnosed with bone cancer in the U.S.every year. There are several kinds of the disease that affect various parts of the skeleton - everywhere from the thigh bone or cartilage or spinal cord, thigh bone. Or it could appear as too much bone growth.

Van Cliburn now lives in Fort Worth, Texas where he hosts one of the world's finest piano competitions.

We wish him well. 

Reviewed by: 
Review Date: 
August 28, 2012
Last Updated:
September 21, 2012