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Michael Schumacher remains stable in hospital on New Year's Day

By Anne Sewell     Jan 1, 2014 in Sports
Grenoble - Michael Schumacher, the Formula One champion who suffered severe brain injuries while skiing at the Meribel resort in the French Alps, remains stable in the hospital on Wednesday. In other news, a journalist tried to visit him, posing as a priest.
Schumacher’s family saw in the New Year at his bedside in the hospital in Grenoble, France with doctors still unsure of his future. He remains in an induced coma and is still in a critical condition.
Schumacher was enjoying off-piste skiing on Sunday, when the 44-year-old fell and hit his head on a rock, with his helmet luckily saving his life. His fans and sport stars worldwide were stunned by the news, as they are more likely to see him risking death on the racing track, than the ski slopes.
According to Schumacher’s manager, Sabine Kehm, his condition is stable at the moment. Kehm gave a press conference to reporters at the hospital on Wednesday to update them on the latest news.
Schumacher’s condition was initially described as serious, but not life-threatening. However, his condition rapidly deteriorated and he entered a critical condition on Sunday evening, followed by emergency surgery.
A slight improvement to his condition on Tuesday allowed doctors to perform a second, almost two hour long procedure, to clear bleeding in his brain, and the doctors warned that he is not out of danger yet.
Jean-Francois Paven, who is the head of the intensive care unit at the Grenoble hospital, told the media that they “cannot speculate on the future” but that he is currently out of danger and the doctors “have gained some time.”
There had been talk of transferring Schumacher from the hospital but doctors have so far ruled this out, saying it would be dangerous. However, they did note that he has age and physical fitness on his side.
Schumacher, who is due to turn 45 on January 3, is currently in a medically induced coma to aid his recovery. Doctors have further reduced his temperature to around 35 degrees Celsius (95 degrees Fahrenheit) to reduce swelling.
It is still unclear how the accident happened. According to Kehm, Schumacher was skiing with “a small group of friends” along with his 14-year-old son, Mick. A source close to the incident said that Schumacher’s helmet was smashed in two by the impact, but reportedly saved his life in the process. He was apparently not skiing at high speed when the accident occurred.
Kehm said: "He seems to have hit a rock as he took a turn. It was a chain of unfortunate circumstances."
She added that even at 10 kilometers (six miles) per hour the accident could also have happened, as it occurred during "a normal turning maneuver".
During the press conference, Kehm mentioned that Schumacher’s condition has brought global attention to his plight and that people have tried to sneak into the hospital to approach his bed, including a person dressed as a priest.
Kehm said that she was told that the person was actually a journalist, trying to get close to the Formula One driver. Kehm asked that everyone should please let the doctors do their work and leave the family alone to spend time with Schumacher.
Talking about how people are trying to sneak from the press room into the clinic itself, she said that it was revolting, in her opinion.
Kehm did, however, confirm that Michael Schumacher remains stable in the hospital at present.
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