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2014-01-16 15:21

ASLEEP FOR LIFE? German newpapers suggest that Michael Schumacher could be asleep for the rest of his life as his condition remains critical. Image: AFP

LONDON, England - Reports from two German publications suggest that former F1 legend Michael Schumacher could be in a coma for the rest of his life. 

Schumacher fell and banged his head against a rock while skiing in Grenoble, France, on December 29 2013.  He was rushed to a nearby hospital where doctors operated to try to fix the damage.

The London Daily Mail reported magazine claims that Schumacher could be in a coma for much longer than previously expected and that his condition was so grave there were no plans to wake him.

FEARS MOUNT

His current condition means that there is not enough oxygen going to his brain, causing further damage. The Daily Mail said being in a coma for that amount of time can have serious side-effects - stress on the liver from anaesthetic, muscle breakdown and cerebrospinal fluid not circulating efficiently.

Neurosurgeon Andreas Zieger told Focus magazine: "There may have been complications. We should not speculate here. Ultimately, we are talking about life and death. A coma can in theory be maintained for a lifetime. It won’t hurt the human brain.

 "Brain injuries are among the most complicated that can happen to the human body. Predictions about how long a person might be in a coma or potential complications are seldom reliable."

Gereon Fink, a neurological expert, fears that Schumacher's condition has already deteriorated to a far worse condition, the Mail reported.

"If the injuries are so severe that it would harm the patient, he is kept longer in the medically induced coma. Depending on where bleeding has taken place, it can lead to unilateral paralysis, speech disorders or personality changes."

German media said the risk of brain haemorrhage remained high - which was why he was still classified as critically ill.


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