• France edition
 
Hypnotised patient sings through throat surgery
Signing through surgery? Is that even possible? Photo: Shutterstock

Hypnotised patient sings through throat surgery

Published: 16 Jun 2014 17:05 GMT+02:00
Updated: 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
Air France pilots' strike enters second week
Air France announced on Sunday that only 41 percent of flights would be operational on Monday. Photo: AFP

Air France pilots' strike enters second week

Air France entered its second week of crippling pilots’ strike on Monday with just 41 percent of flights set to take off as planned. READ  

Napoleon marriage document draws €437K
Josephine and Napoleon's marriage document went for a whopping sum at auction.

Napoleon marriage document draws €437K

Napoleon and Josephine’s marriage licence fetched a whopping €437,500 at auction on Sunday, one more remarkable happening in one of the world’s greatest love stories. READ  

Sarkozy comeback: 'I don't have a choice'
A TV grab shows former French president Nicolas Sarkozy speaking during France 2 broadcast news in Paris. Photo: France 2/AFP

Sarkozy comeback: 'I don't have a choice'

Nicolas Sarkozy painted a dire portrait of the crisis in France on Sunday as the ex-president capped a high-profile political comeback that has kicked off a battle for supremacy over the country's struggling opposition. READ  

PM slams farmers for torching tax office
An officer of technical and forensic police takes pictures of the partially burned tax center, on September 20, 2014 in Morlaix, western of France. AFP Photo/Fred Tanneau

PM slams farmers for torching tax office

French Prime Minister Manuel Valls on Saturday vowed to prosecute farmers in Brittany who torched tax and insurance buildings and dumped vegetables in the streets in protest at falling living standards. READ  

London to help France pay for Calais migrants
French police watching illigal immigrants while they wait in line on to receive meals from the "La Belle Etoile" (Pretty Star) association in Calais. AFP Photo/Philippe Huguen

London to help France pay for Calais migrants

Britain has bowed to French pressure to help foot the bill for migrants flooding into the northern port of Calais in a bid to reach Britain, Paris said on Saturday. READ  

Cause of Mali air crash still a mystery: probe
Debris found in the aftermath of the crash of the Air Algerie Flight AH5017. Photo: AFP

Cause of Mali air crash still a mystery: probe

Investigators probing the crash of an Air Algerie flight in Mali that killed 116 people in July said on Saturday there was no obvious lead yet and all possibilities, including terrorism, were being explored. READ  

France plan air lifts to help fight Ebola
Liberian Red Cross health workers, wearing protective suits, carry the body of a 18-old-month baby, victim of the Ebola virus in Monrovia. AFP Photo/Zoom Dosso

France plan air lifts to help fight Ebola

France and Germany will send military transport planes to West Africa to help efforts to contain the Ebola epidemic, German Chancellor Angela Merkel and military officials said on Friday. READ  

Moody's keeps France on negative outlook
Credit ratings agency Moody's said that France till has significant credit strengths. Photo: Joel Saget/AFP

Moody's keeps France on negative outlook

Moody's maintained its negative rating on France on Friday but -- despite earlier reports -- did not deal the struggling economy a downgrade. READ  

Air France strike to continue another week
Air France pilots have voted to continue their strike for another week. Photo: AFP

Air France strike to continue another week

Air France pilots voted on Friday to extend their strike for another week, while management has showed no signs of compromising, according to French media reports. Roughly half of the flagship carrier's flights have remained grounded due to the action. READ  

‘Red tape France’ tops UN e-efficiency list
France apparently isn't the world capital of red tape. Photo: Department for Communities and Local Government/Flickr

‘Red tape France’ tops UN e-efficiency list

France, notorious for its jungle of red-tape, has apparently been undersserving of some of that criticism. A new report ranks France as the best country in Europe when it comes to online government services. READ  

RECEIVE OUR NEWSLETTER AND ALERTS
Marks & Spencer
Sponsored Article
Fashion Ladies of the Local: Win a New Autumn Look
National
Ten great bars in Paris only locals know about
Society
France's top expat tribes: Which are you?
National
France to set flat-rate for Paris airport taxis
Politics
French separatists want Scots to say 'yes'
National
Anti-dog poo offensive launched in French town
National
Scammers attack Paris's top cop at tourist hotspot
National
French leader didn't pay his rent for three years
National
'WW2 bomb' kills camper on French island
Does France have a racism problem?
National
National
'Enough gloom, France is an amazing country'
Gallery
The top ten tourist traps to avoid in France
Politics
The juiciest bits from Trierweiler's tell-all book
Politics
Trierweiler tells all: 'Hollande wanted me back, at any price'
Education
'Sacre bleu!' Do the French really say that?
Politics
Manuel Valls has plenty in common with Tony Blair, but not background
International
Votes for expats: Plan to end UK's 15-year rule
Gallery
Ten dos and don'ts for keeping your French in-laws happy
National
Unemployment: How does France compare to Europe?
International
Are all the talented professionals really leaving France?
National
La France profonde: Is it a rural idyll or a backwater hell?
Travel
Check out the four new attractions coming to Paris this autumn
Gallery
The French words you can't translate literally
National
Ten things you need to know about France's economics whizzkid
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