• France's news in English
 

Hypnotised patient sings through throat surgery

Published: 16 Jun 2014 17:05 GMT+02:00

Not many patients would be brave enough to be hypnotised if they have to go under the knife, let alone sing throughout the surgery, but for one singer in France, that appeared to be her only option.

When Alama Kanté, niece of the famous Guinean singer Mory Kanté, was told she needed an operation on a tumour on her parathroid glaand in her throat, she faced the possibility that she may never be able to perform again.

If her vocal chords were damaged, it would harm her singing voice and leave her having to find another career.

In an interview with Le Parisien newspaper surgeon Gilles Dhonneur, from the Henri-Mondor hospital near Creteil, said that for the singer, who specialises in African chants, it was imperative that they were able to check during the surgery that her “work utensils” or vocal chords were not damaged.

Although the pain of such a procedure is normally so unbearable that general anaesthetic would be the obvious option, Dhonneur said, the need to keep Kanté awake meant surgeons had to think of an alternative method.

Thankfully the inventive medics came up with a way to perform the surgery effectively whilst protecting her voice.

The decided to employ the “perfect compromise” of hypnotism along with a small dose of local anaesthetic and as such they were able to keep Kanté awake and ask her to sing at certain stages during the process.

“She went into a trance listening to the words of the hypnotist. She went far away, to Africa and she began to sing. It was amazing,” the surgeon told Le Parisien.

(Singer Alama Kanté after her successful operation)

At a press conference on Saturday the singer told the media that she has fully recovered and is ready to return to the stage.

“The anaesthetist asked if I wanted to go on a journey, so I let her lead the way,” Kanté said.

Hypnosis was first used as an anaesthetic in 1992, by Professor Marie-Elizabeth Faymonville in a hospital in the Belgian town of Liège.

According to the Le Figaro, the technique is commonly used in France to treat severe pain, for example in major burns. However it is becoming more common for hypnotism to be used in operations.

Don't miss stories about France, join us on Facebook and Twitter

Ben McPartland (ben.mcpartland@thelocal.com)

Your comments about this article

Today's headlines
Greece crisis
Hollande meets Merkel to seek way out of crisis
Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras met with the Greek President Prokopis Pavlopoulos in Athens on Monday. Photo: AFP

Hollande meets Merkel to seek way out of crisis

UPDATED: French president François Hollande was due to hold talks with Germany's Angela Merkel in Paris on Monday as the heads of the eurozone's two biggest economies seek a solution to the Greece crisis. READ  

Far left and far right herald Greece’s ‘No’ vote
Marine Le Pen was thrilled by Sunday's Greek referendum result. Photo: AFP

Far left and far right herald Greece’s ‘No’ vote

While France’s mainstream parties differ wildly over what to do with Greece, the country’s more extreme political groups on the far left and the far right have both hailed the referendum result. READ  

Tour de France stage hit by almighty crash
Race chief Christian Prudhomme signals that the race has been "neutralised" after the crash. Photo: AFP

Tour de France stage hit by almighty crash

Stage three of the 2015 Tour de France had to be temporarily stopped on Monday after an almighty crash left several riders injured. See the dramatic video here. READ  

Paris to welcome Game of Thrones exhibition
The exhibition includes Khaleesi's dragon eggs. Screengrab: YouTube

Paris to welcome Game of Thrones exhibition

Paris may be in the midst of a scorching heatwave, but for Game of Thrones fans in the city winter is certainly coming, with the upcoming arrival of an exhibition devoted to the blockbuster TV series. READ  

Army to patrol Tour de France rail crossings
An image of the the riders crossing the train tracks in the Paris-Roubaix race just before a TGV arrives. Photo: Screengrab Eurosport

Army to patrol Tour de France rail crossings

French soldiers will guard every train crossing on the route on the Tour de France to stop riders going under the barrier, the government said Monday. READ  

Belgians are the bad boys of French roads
The most common driving offence in France is speeding. Photo: Philippe Desmazes/AFP

Belgians are the bad boys of French roads

Belgian drivers commit an average of 1,150 driving offences per day in France, far more than other European nations, according to statistics released by France's road safety agency. READ  

French teen shoots dead own twin by accident
Tragedy in eastern France as a bother accidentally shoots his twin dead.Photo: AFP

French teen shoots dead own twin by accident

A tragic accident in eastern France on Sunday saw a 14-year-old French boy accidentally shoot his twin brother dead during a family dinner. READ  

Wanted: 50,000 more French civil servants
In 2013 there were 5.6 million civil servants on France's payroll. Photo: Crowd.

Wanted: 50,000 more French civil servants

A whopping 20 percent of France’s working population is on the payroll of the state. But new figures reveal that there are still 50,000 posts that need to be filled. READ  

Fine French wines to mature in Atlantic Ocean
Is storing wine in the sea the future? Photo: Credit Agricole GC

Fine French wines to mature in Atlantic Ocean

Will wine lovers be storing their priciest plonk at the bottom of the sea in future, instead of in their basements? An experiment underway off the coast of western France could soon give us the answer. READ  

European heatwave
Heatwave not finished with France just yet
People enjoy the mist from a water sprayer at the entrance of the 27th Eurockeennes music festival site in Belfort on July 4th. Photo: Sebastien Bozon/AFP

Heatwave not finished with France just yet

The heatwave that has baked France for almost week continued to leave huge parts of the country on alert on Monday. READ  

RECEIVE OUR NEWSLETTER AND ALERTS
Travel
France has two new World Heritage sites, but here's ten you don't know
International
Does France really not need to fear a Grexit?
National
GPS helps blind French hikers cross mountains
National
Dreading the heatwave in France? Here's how to survive the sun
National
Brits might have the brighter economy but are the French happier?
Ryanair or French air traffic controllers: Who would you support?
How life will change in France as of July 1st
These are best places in Paris to escape the heatwave
Ten beaches in France where you'd love to be during the heatwave
Calais chaos: Travellers left to curse 'striking French'
Society
Why the French are right to strike (but perhaps not burn tracks)
National
Frenchwoman dies as bungee jump ends in tragedy
Travel
The most beautiful French villages you've never heard of
National
Can we really feel any sympathy for French taxi drivers?
Feigned French shock over US spying is not fooling anyone
Gallery
When Franco-American relations turn sour - Ten transatlantic scraps
Sport
Dozens fall violently ill after 'mud race' in France
How a genetically modified 'jellyfish-lamb' ended being eaten in France
Culture
Ten must-visit movie scene locations in Paris
National
Paris to return historic squares to the people
Forget Nutella here's eight things the French should really give up
Sport
What the 2024 Olympic Games in Paris would look like
It's time to lay off the French - They are not that rude
National
Just look at what France has given the United States over the years
Health
France's creaking health service must change if it wants to stay world's best
National
French warn UK: 'Brexit could be your Waterloo'
Europe commemorates 200 years since Waterloo
National
Waterloo: What you need to know about Napoleon
French told stop eating Nutella to save planet
Is it time for France's empty churches to be turned into mosques?
French people told to stop scoffing Nutella in order to save planet
Society
French school teacher shows his pupils porn film
National
IN PICTURES: See the blaze that ravaged a French basilica
Video: Tourists shocked by Calais migrants scramble
The French words the English language needs to steal right now
Bupa
Sponsored Article
Healthcare: 9 questions every expat should ask
Travel
13 ways France aims to become more welcoming to tourists
Education
Expat parents protest changes to admissions for Paris bilingual schools
Education
Test yourself: Just how good is your French grammar?
Travel
France to spend 'hundreds of millions' on tourism
Latest news from The Local in Austria

More news from Austria at thelocal.at

Latest news from The Local in Switzerland

More news from Switzerland at thelocal.ch

Latest news from The Local in Germany

More news from Germany at thelocal.de

Latest news from The Local in Denmark

More news from Denmark at thelocal.dk

Latest news from The Local in Spain

More news from Spain at thelocal.es

Latest news from The Local in Italy

More news from Italy at thelocal.it

Latest news from The Local in Norway

More news from Norway at thelocal.no

Latest news from The Local in Sweden

More news from Sweden at thelocal.se

3,584
jobs available