On Friday, Texans linebacker Brian Cushing defended his position that he never took hCG (a steroids chaser) by claiming that he feared that he had an elevated hCG level due to the presence of one or more tumors in his body. He claimed that he spent the rest of the year fearful that it could be not only his last year in football, but also the last year of his life.
Whether and to what extent Cushing underwent testing to detect or rule out cancer wasn’t developed at the press conference, possibly due to the time restriction the Texans placed on the Q&A session and possibly due to the fact that the assembled reporters were blindsided by the eyebrow-raising claim.
Since then, Cushing’s agent has told John McClain of the Houston Chronicle that Cushing underwent a “battery of tests” in November, and that he has undergone further testing in Houston, San Diego, and Denver.
“He was tested for a variety of things that were recommended by his [personal] doctor,” agent Tom Condon said. “My understanding is they’re going to
do it again. They’re going to take him from head to toe and repeat
Condon didn’t specifically say that Cushing was tested for cancer. McClain reports, citing an unnamed person close to Cushing, that he tested negative for testicular cancer. It could be that the tests primarily were aimed at determining how Cushing could be producing enough hCG to result in a positive test, in order to keep it from happening again. (And it reportedly hasn’t happened again.)
To the extent that Cushing was being extensively tested in order to ensure that he doesn’t have cancer, the fact that close friends and teammates had no clue that he feared having this disease makes the situation even more confusing.