Trepanation, or trepanning, is a procedure where sharp instruments were used to bore holes through the skull. It is the oldest surgery know to man. It was practised as early as 10,000 B.C. and was commonly used to treat head-related illnesses both mental and physical. Trepanning was performed without anaesthesia, so that the patient was awake during the procedure. Trepanning was practised well into the 18th century.