Tooth and Nail: The Making of a Female Fight Doctor

December 2, 2020
Tooth and Nail: The Making of a Female Fight Doctor

A Boston Globe Best Sports Book of 2018A fearless and exhilarating memoir of a surgeon whobecame one of the first female ringside boxing doctors in New YorkCity, for fans of Judy Melinek, Pauline Chen and AtulGawandeFresh out of medical school, Linda Dahl began her surgicalresidency in the Bronx as a total fish out of water. Growing up ina Middle Eastern family in the American Midwest, she was a bornoutsider, and in her new community in New York, she felt even moreisolated. Even at work she struggled to fit in: among her fellowspecialists, she was one of the only women.One night, at her husband's urging, Dahl watched a boxing matchbetween Shane Mosley and Oscar De La Hoya. Seeing Mosley surviveagainst the odds gave Dahl hope that she, too, could find herfooting. As her fandom grew, boxing became a way to connect withher patients and community. Later, when she was in practice on theUpper East Side, Dahl received a phone call from the New York StateAthletic Commission. They were looking for a fight doctor. Dahlaccepted.Tooth and Nail chronicles the years Dahl spent as an ear, noseand throat surgeon by day and a ringside physician by night.Intrepid, adrenaline-fueled and loaded with behind-the-scenes takeson famous boxers, including Mike Tyson, Wladimir Klitschko andMiguel Cotto, Dahl's story offers a modern examination of sexism,dislocation, the theater of boxing and a road map for how to excelin two very different male-dominated worlds.