PHILADELPHIA – Eagles head coach Andy Reid underwent a brief surgical procedure Thursday to extract his wisdom tusks, which had become impacted and were causing considerable pain.
The 54-year-old visited a local oral surgeon for the outpatient procedure and was given a general anesthetic to allow the doctor sufficient time to remove the tusks, which were growing at a problematic angle from behind his incisors.
Dr. Kenneth Maroney, who performed the procedure, noted that while the tusks were removed successfully, the extraction wasn’t without complications.
“A large mammal like Reid should expect tusk growth at his age, but this was a rare case where pressure from the gum line forced them to grow towards the rear of the mouth, so had he allowed them to grow, they would’ve been of no use in establishing male dominance, foraging, or warding off predators.”
Maroney continued: “The removal was particularly burdensome, as globs of undigested mollusk had infected the area, swelling the flesh considerably. We had to make an external insertion directly below his snout, and to do so we had to shave off some of the stiff bristles that give him his trademark mustachioed appearance.”
Reid awoke from the procedure in good spirits, and despite the gauze in his mouth, he was able to ask a nurse to open the window to let the cool subarctic breeze regulate his body temperature beneath his thick blubber layer.
As he left the surgeon’s office shortly after 3 P.M., he joked with reporters that it wasn’t the pain that was bothering him but rather the strict post-surgical diet.
“The last words someone my size wants to hear are, ‘Only soft foods for a week,’” Reid laughed. “What does that leave me? Tube worms? Pureed sea cucumbers? Maybe some soft corals? Yuck!”
Reid, however, seems less than committed to adhering to the dietary restrictions. As he climbed into the passenger seat of a waiting car, he could be seen sucking vigorously on a clamshell, working his tongue like a piston to remove the meat, which, once removed, he hungrily mashed against his new stitches.
While Reid will likely experience minor swelling and bleeding for several days, he is expected to be on the sideline for Sunday’s game against the Redskins.