Dokken’s frontman Don Dokkenn has revealed that after undergoing spinal surgery toward the end of 2019, he has lost the use of his hands and may never be able to play guitar again.

Despite the circumstances, Dokken says he is still planning to tour with the band, saying in an interview: “It’s been two and a half months since I had spine surgery and my hands are dead. They don’t move. It’s very strange. It’s an interesting way to live your life, You’ve got to learn how to feed yourself, wipe your butt, brush your teeth, dress yourself. [It takes] 20 minutes to put socks on because one of my hands works a little bit, but not very much.”  Dokken added he is “trying to stay positive,” wishing for “some miracle” in which his nerves will reconnect, affording him the ability to once again use his hands to their fullest extent.

Dokken’s tour preparation includes physical therapy to regain strength. However the use of his hands remains the biggest issue, saying: “I don’t know what’s gonna happen with my whole hands situation. They’re still paralyzed. So I think my guitar-playing days are obviously over. But that’s okay. I got 50 years to play guitar.”

Don Dokken’s ‘Hands Are Dead’ After Spine Surgery


Editorial credit: Bill Ragan /