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Race Car Schumachers' 10-Yr Health Battle Has Left Wife Corinna Like a Prisoner

Hopes fade for Schumacher's recovery amid fears he may remain in a 'persistent vegetative state' forever but his family say he's a 'fighter and will not give up'

  • F1 legend has been in a medically induced coma for nearly four weeks
  • Neurologist: 'Every day the chances decline that situation is improving'
  • Austrian media speculate that seven-time champion has Apallic Syndrome
  • Family says they are 'deeply moved' by support from fans around the world
By Daily Mail UK, 22 January 2014


Fears are growing that Michael Schumacher could remain in a 'persistent vegetative state' for the rest of his life even if he wakes up from his coma.

The Formula One legend has been in intensive care since his skiing accident in France nearly four weeks ago.
He was placed into an artificially induced coma shortly after the crash to help his brain heal, but such measures normally last only a maximum of two weeks.
Jean-Marc Orgogozo, Professor of Neurology at the University of Bordeaux, said: 'Every day, every week in a coma the chances decline that the situation is improving'.
One Austrian website reported Schumacher, 45, may suffer from Apallic Syndrome or persistent vegetative state.




Improvement: Schumacher is in a stable condition after suffering severe head injuries in a skiiing accident



Support act: Schumacher's wife Corinna insists her husband is a 'fighter' who will not give up


But his family insisted he was a 'fighter' as they poured out their heartfelt thanks to fans around the world on his webpage on Tuesday.

'We all know: he is a fighter and will not give up!' said his family, adding: 'We are deeply moved that there is no let up in the good wishes for Michael from around the world.

'That gives us strength. Thank you all of you!'

But the support of his wife Corinne, 44, his two teenaged children, brother and closest friends cannot mask the fact that 23 days in an artificial coma means that he is far from anywhere near recovery.
A persistent vegetative state is one in which patients with severe brain damage are in a state of partial arousal rather than true awareness.




'Deeply moved': Schumacher's Rolf Schumacher and brother Ralf arrive at Grenoble Hospital earlier this month. His family have issued a heartfelt thank you to fans around the world for their support




Strain: Corinna Schumacher and their children have been maintaining a constant bedside vigil since his crash

This means that if doctors do bring him out of his artificially induced coma he would be unable to speak, move or feed himself.
The format.at news website said; 'More than three weeks after the tragic skiing accident of the seven-time Formula 1 World Champion Michael Schumacher, hope dwindle for a full recovery.
'For more than three weeks now Schumacher lies in a medically induced coma at the University Hospital in Grenoble.

He is fed there with probes, washed daily and moved again and again to avoid a bed sores.'


Fans hold vigil outside Schumacher's hospital






Probe: Investigators at the site of Schumacher's crash earlier this month where he smashed his head on a rock while skiing off-piste in Meribel, France


It goes on to speculate that the 'severe damage' he suffered to his brain in a ski accident on December 29 could result in the permanent vegative state suffered by around 10,000 of his German countrymen.
This would mean, if and when he is brought out of the coma by his medical team, 'that his condition would hardly be different from the medically induced coma'.

Apallic Syndrome is always the result of a severe brain injury. The chance of recovery from Apallic Syndrome are far below 50 per cent.'
Schumacher's condition remains stable but there is a firewall of silence from his medical team about the intense battle being waged to try to bring him back to normality.




Get well soon! Cologne and Schalke stars hold out a banner wishing Michael Schumacher good health

As Schumacher enters his fourth week in such a state neurological experts are starting to doubt whether he might ever recover sufficiently to be brought out of his sleep.

Meanwhile, his family have paid tribute to Bundesliga sides Cologne and Schalke on the Formula One legendís official website.

Players from both sides held up a banner which read ĎGet Well Soon! You can do it, Michaelí prior to their friendly on Saturday in honour of the 45-year-old German, who is a Cologne supporter.

The message from the seven-time championís family is the first in over a fortnight and comes just days after it was confirmed that he is in a stable condition at Grenoble Hospital.


Quote:
CHANCES OF RECOVERING FROM APALLIC SYNDROME BELOW 50%

Apallic Syndrome - or persistent vegetative state - occurs when a patient with severe brain damage remains in a state of partial arousal rather than true awareness after waking from a coma.

Patients can breathe on their own and circulate because their brainstem remains intact, but they are largely unresponsive to stimulation.
The chance of recovery from Apallic Syndrome are far below 50 per cent.
There is no treatment, but a person can live for many years with the right medical care.


Brain injury patients are placed into artificial comas to reduce the amount of oxygen that flows into the brain, thus making it work less and giving it time to heal.
Such comas usually last for a maximum of two weeks, although there have been instances of patients being under longer.
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