A professional singer, who was hypnotised, has sung through an operation to remove a tumour from her throat in order to help surgeons avoid damaging her vocal chords.
Alama Kanté, a Guinean singer, who is based in France, was given a local anaesthetic and was hypnotised ahead of the operation at the Henri Mondor hospital in Creteil near Paris.
Kanté had feared that her vocal chords would be damaged during the tricky operation to remove a parathyroid gland tumour from her throat.
The surgeon had warned her that a single slip of the scalpel could have destroyed her singing voice.
In a 'world first' the surgeon suggested that she sing at critical moments during the procedure to ensure that the operation "was going well".
According to Le Figaro, Ms Kanté underwent the operation without the usual general anaesthetic, a process that Professor Gilles Dhonneur, head of the anaesthesia at the hospital, said would lead to "intolerable pain" without the use of hypnosis.
According to The Times, Ms Kanté sang two songs from her forthcoming album during the operation.
“She went into a sort of trance when she listened to the words of the hypnotist. She went a long way away, to Africa. And then she began to sing. It was incredible, Professor Dhonneur told The Times.
“It was certainly a world first,” he said. “I don’t think anyone has ever piloted an operation using the voice before."
“Because she was singing during the critical moments, we could be sure that the operation was going well”, he added.
The operation, which took place in April, but the details of which were revealed over the weekend, involved Kanté letting the hypnotist "guide" her on a journey to Senegal.
According to The Times when Kanté was being injected with the anaesthetic her hypnotist told her she had been bitten by a mosquito in order to maintain the illusion.
The singer has since made a full recovery.