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s0518 BC-CYC-Armstrong-Injury 2ndLd-Writethru 03-24 0686

Armstrong to have surgery today

AUSTIN, Texas — Lance Armstrong is planning to ride in the Giro d’Italia in May even though his broken collarbone is a bit more serious than first thought.

"I think the Giro is still very doable," the seven-time Tour de France champion said Tuesday night during a conference call with reporters. "This is definitely a setback, no doubt. It’s the biggest setback I’ve ever had in my cycling career, so it’s a new experience for me."

Although initial indications were it was a clean break, the 37-year-old American cyclist said new tests in Austin showed "multiple pieces" of broken bone.

He will have surgery today, and Austin sports medicine specialist Dr. Douglas Elenz, an orthopedic surgeon, will insert a plate to stabilize the collarbone.

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"I think they try to put the puzzle back together," Armstrong said.

Armstrong crashed Monday in the first stage of the Vuelta of Castilla and Leon race in northern Spain. He flew home to Austin on Tuesday and went straight to visit Elenz.

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