A brave patient stayed wide awake as a surgeon sawed through his ankle bone, after using HYPNOSIS to numb the pain.
Trained hypnotherapist Alex Lenkei has gone under the knife without general anesthetic an astonishing six times, saying he much prefers putting himself into a hypnotic trance to the traditional drugs used to bring about loss of consciousness.
And during his most recent operation to replace an ankle joint, he even asked consultant orthopedic surgeon Dominic Neilsen: “How’s it going?”
Mr Neilsen, who performed the surgery at Surrey’s Epsom Hospital, admitted it was “nerve-wracking” make the first incision on a conscious patient.
He said: “He did amazingly well with the whole thing.
“To be honest, it was just like doing any other operation. Alex went through the process, which took a very short period of time, and he told us he was ready to go ahead.
“It was then a case of getting on and doing the operation. It sort of went out of my mind that he was awake and able to correspond.”
As well as checking on the progress of his own surgery Mr Lenkei, 66, also commented on the noise the saw was making.
“It was strange,” said surgeon Mr Neilsen. “He just seemed to put himself into a trance and just lay there and didn’t have any problems at all.”
An anaesthesiologist was on hand in case the hypnosis failed, but Mr Lenkei, who has been using self-hypnosis since the age of 17, said doctors had agreed to let him have the procedure without losing consciousness because he had a “track record”.
The six operations he has had without general anaesthesia include surgery on his hand, a hernia removal and freeing a trapped nerve near his elbow.