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Doctors trying to bring Michael Schumacher out of induced coma

Michael SchumacherOpen-Wheel Racing

Doctors have begun trying to bring Michael Schumacher out of a medically induced coma that the Formula One legend has been in since suffering severe head injuries in a skiing accident a month ago.

"Michael's sedation is being reduced in order to allow the start of the waking-up process which may take a long time," the Associated Press reported Schumacher's manager, Sabine Kehm, as saying in a statement.

Kehm said she was providing the update only to clarify recent media reports about Schumacher's condition and that no further details would be announced, the AP reported.

Schumacher, 45, fell and hit his head on a rock a month ago while skiing in the French Alpine resort of Meribel.

Despite wearing a helmet, he suffered head injuries that required two surgeries and he was placed in the induced coma at Grenoble University Hospital in France to reduce swelling in his brain.

Media outlets quoted various outside specialists as saying it was uncertain how well Schumacher might respond to the doctors' efforts, that the effort could take weeks or months and that it might even be possible that the German driver would have to put back in a coma.

Britain's Guardian newspaper quoted Peter Andrews, professor of intensive care at Edinburgh University, as saying "we won't know his cognitive ability until about three months after the injury."

Dr. Clemens Pahl, a brain trauma expert at King's College Hospital in London, told the AP that with patients with severe brain injuries, it was not uncommon that it might take several attempts to bring someone out of an induced coma.

Schumacher, who retired a second time after the 2012 season, won a record seven Formula One titles and also holds the career record for wins with 91.

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