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BCS National Championship - Florida State v Auburn

Source: Jeff Gross / Getty


Bo Jackson was a fearsome athlete in both major league baseball and football until his potential Hall of Fame career was cut short by a hip injury.

But that hasn’t proven to be the most devasting thing that’s happened to him physically. Jackson revealed on the McElroy and Cubelic Morning Show that chronic hiccups are what have given him the most trouble. He says he’s had them since last July, and no remedies have worked.

“I have done everything: scare me, drink water upside down, smell the a-s of a porcupine. It doesn’t work,” he said. “I’ve had the hiccups since last July and I’m getting a medical procedure done at the end of this week, I think, to try to remedy it.”

Jackson says doctors couldn’t find any reason for the persistent hiccups. But Jackson will have a procedure soon that may help eliminate them, though he wasn’t specific about what that might be.

The former Auburn University star missed a chance to celebrate his fellow alumni, Hall of Fame first baseman Frank Thomas, known throughout his career as The Big Hurt. Thomas was honored at his alma mater. Jackson said the hiccups kept him from the ceremony.

“But I’m busy at the hospital sitting up with doctors poking me and shining lights down my throat, and probing me every way they can to find out why I’ve got these hiccups, so that’s the only reason that I wasn’t there.”

As annoying as it sounds, chronic hiccups can be severe and remain a mystery.

“A fair amount of time when someone is having hiccuping episodes for a while, it’s the body telling that person that something is going on either in the chest, lungs, or abdomen,” Josh Silverman, a New York-based otolaryngologist told Med Today. 

Silverman says Botox is one way to deal with hiccups when placed on top of the voice box of the esophagus. But a common procedure is orphrenic nerve ablation, which can help but does impact the diaphragm, Silverman says. The good news is that one of the procedures helps almost two-thirds of patients affected.

Jackson, now 60, played for the Oakland Raiders, the Kansas City Royals, Chicago White Sox, and the California Angels. He was a Heisman Trophy winner as a running back at Auburn and the only athlete to have ever been an All-Star in both the NFL and in the MLB.

Jackson was also one of sport’s first big advertising pitchmen for Nike in his “Bo Knows” campaign with the late blues and rock ‘n roll icon Bo Diddley. His ads predated Jordan’s with Spike Lee, and if you check out the clip below, you’ll see that Jordan was in his commercial.

Jackson’s stellar career was cut short by a hip injury he suffered in an NFL game in 1991. He does say he may not have played football had he known the long-term extent of CTE injuries which he said weren’t well-researched during the time he played. But Jackson’s apparently done well in the years since his athletic heyday and doesn’t regret his short-lived career.

“You know what,” Jackson told USA Today in 2017, “I still wouldn’t change a thing. The man upstairs had a plan of the way of working things out, and they did.

“I have no regrets.”

See how Twitter’s reacting to his battle with hiccups below.

Sports Legend Bo Jackson To Undergo Procedure to Cure Year-Long Hiccups, Unlocks New Fear For Twitter  was originally published on cassiuslife.com

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