A 46-year-old man who told doctors he was hearing voices reportedly ripped out his own eyeballs during a Sunday church service in northern Italy, The Sun reports.
According to The Daily Mail, Aldo Bianchini, who was born in the UK but spent most of his life in Italy, used his bare hands to tear out his eyeballs just as Rev. Lorenzo Tanganelli began conducting Mass. He then collapsed on the floor in a pool of his own blood.
"This man at the back of the nave started tearing at his face and I realized he was gouging out his eyes," Tanganelli told the paper. "I called for assistance and the paramedics were quickly at the scene, and he was taken away and then I carried on celebrating Mass, but a lot of people had left because they were so shocked by what they had seen."
Bianchini was taken to the hospital for treatment, but doctors say he will never be able to see again.
"In 26 years of practicing medicine, I have never seen anything like it," Dr. Gino Barbacci, the emergency physician who treated Bianchini, told the Italian-language news site Bresciaoggi.it, according to a HuffPost translation.
From The Daily Mail, quoting Dr. Barbacci:
"He was in a great deal of agony and he was covered in blood. He said that he had used his bare hands to gouge out his eyeballs after hearing voices telling him to do so -- to do something like that requires superhuman strength."
According to a HuffPost translation of Corriere Fiorentino, Bianchini studied chemistry and speaks five languages, but he had not found work. He has lived with his mother for about 20 years in Viareggio, a coastal city in northern Tuscany near Pisa.