Dr. David Hanscom is a spinal surgeon on a mission for change. As a board certified orthopedic surgeon, David specializes in the surgical correction of complex spine problems. David’s clinical career in orthopedic surgery, with both adults and children, has specialized in corrections of spinal deformities, and he’s specialized in helping people with multiple spinal surgeries to regain their quality of life. He’s been performing complex spinal surgery since 1986, and also founded the Puget Sound Spine Society in 1987.
Despite a very successful career as a surgeon, David noticed there were many people that had pain that did not need his expertise with the scalpel. He spent more time learning about non-operative pain management and rehabilitation. He noticed that people who were enrolled in pre-operation exercise programs were getting better without surgery. He reviewed the research and had the confronting realization that lumbar fusion surgery, which he had been taught as the gold standard for controlling back pain, had a less than 25% success rate.
David began to share pain and stress management tools that he used on his own chronic back pain with his patients. This included not only exercise, but changing their thinking, beliefs and behaviors around their pain. This evolved into a structured system, called the DOC (Direct your own Care) Protocol, and published Back in Control: A Surgeon’s Roadmap Out of Chronic Pain“.