F1 champion out of coma, interacting with family.
Formula One legend Michael Schumacher has emerged from his six-month coma, and has been interacting with his wife and children. Shumacher was moved yesterday from Grenoble hospital in France -- where he has been treated since his skiing accident last December -- to a facility in the Swiss city of Laussanne to undergo further treatment.
“Michael has left the CHU Grenoble to continue his long phase of rehabilitation. He is not in a coma any more,” the Schumacher family's spokeswoman Sabine Kehm said in a statement.
German newspapers have overnight reported that during his “waking phases” he has been able to open his eyes and interact with his wife Corinna Schumacher and their children.
However doctors cautioned the public that Schumacher was unlikely to make a full recovery. “The fact he was in a coma for so long ... we can assume that he has had quite a bad injury. People don’t tend to make a full recovery from that sort of injury,” Tipu Aziz, professor of neurosurgery at the University of Oxford, said.
The Schumacher family's statement thanked his medical team and fans, but asked for privacy for his further treatment.
“His family would like to explicitly thank all his treating doctors, nurses and therapists in Grenoble as well as the first aiders at the place of the accident, who did an excellent job in those first months," the statement said.
“The family also wishes to thank all the people who have sent Michael all the many good wishes to Michael. We are sure it helped him. For the future we ask for understanding that his further rehabilitation will take place away from the public eye.”
The seven-time F1 champion, was placed in the coma at Grenoble hospital immediately after the December 29 accident at the luxury Meribel ski resort in the French Alps. In January doctors started reducing the coma medication as part of a months-long plan to return him to consciousness.
The family announced in April that he had been showing "moments of consciousness and awakening" but until yesterday, little other news had been released about changes in his condition.
During his F1 career, Schumacher amassed seven drivers’ titles, 91 Grand Prix victories and 68 pole positions, making him the most successful driver in the event's history. He retired at the end of the 2012 season.