A hypnotist stunned medics by snubbing anaesthetic and sending himself into a trance before undergoing surgery.

Mind-bender Alex Lenkei, who could hear the cracking of bones as the surgeon sawed at his hand but felt nothing, is thought to be the first person in the world to perform the feat.

Mr Lenkei, 61, has told of how he felt “wonderful” as he showed off his bandaged and swollen hand, fresh from the 83-minute surgery he underwent on Wednesday at Worthing Hospital, West Sussex.

Mr Lenkei, a father-of-one from Worthing, told how he could hear his surgeon talking as he slit a four-inch cut in his right wrist to chisel out a walnut-sized chunk of bone and move a tendon.

He said: “It took me about 30 seconds to put myself under and I wasn’t aware of any part of my body apart from my arm. I could feel the surgeon pulling and manipulating me – then I heard the cracking of bones. I heard him say, ‘can I have the saw please?’, and imagined him holding this great big thing in his hand. But fortunately he then said’ ‘I think we’ll use the smaller one.’

“He used a hammer and chisel at one stage and I could hear him hammering away at the bone. I heard everything he was saying to his assistants and anaethetist, but there was no gossip. It was a shame – I was hoping to hear something juicy.”

There’s a news video on this page and some gory photos of the operation in progress on this.