R. Norman Harden, MD, Associate Professor, Northwestern University, Pain Management and Rehabilitation, and Physical Therapy; Director, Center for Pain Studies, Rehabilitation Institute of Chicago, Pain Management and Rehabilitation, Chicago, IL.
What inspired you to become a healthcare provider?
I was starving as a writer, and bored in graduate school, even with a full-time job and my band. I was whining one night and someone bet me I couldn’t get into medical school. Needless to say I didn’t stay bored after acceptance.
Why did you focus on pain management?
It’s a great place to be as a program designer, study designer, and researcher…since no one knew jack when I got in this business. Of course it remains, conversely, a terrible place to be as a patient…because it still seems like we don’t know jack.
Who were your mentors?
Robert Taylor (physiology), Stefano Brena (pain systems), and Gary Bennett (how to think).
If you weren't a healthcare provider, what would you be?
Actually, I still hope my night job—rock and roll drummer—will save me from my day job.
What is your most marked characteristic?
What do you consider your greatest achievement?
Raising my lads thus far.
What is your favorite language?
English. I was an English major…see above.
If you had to choose one book, one film, and one piece of music to take into space for an undetermined amount of time, what would they be?
Of Human Bondage. Brazil. And Major Tom (the space thing).
What would you like your legacy to be?
Improved pain care delivery, advanced study design, better outcomes measures, saved the life of a few pain patients, world’s best dad (my boys assure me that is the case), and helped nationalize health care in the USA.
What is your motto?
What’s so funny ‘bout peace, love, and understanding?