31 Jan Race Car Driver Michael Schumacher Brought Out of Medically Induced Coma
Formula 1 race car legend, Michael Schumacher, is slowly being brought out of a medically induced coma. He was put in the coma after he suffered a serious head and brain injury in a skiing accident at a French resort on December 29.
Following the accident, doctors performed two brain operations to remove blood clots on his brain. The coma was induced to help reduce and control swelling—and thus pressure—on his brain. If the brain is badly damaged, such as in this case, the body needs to rest to allow it to heal. Doctors will sometimes deliberately induce a coma, called a drug-induced or controlled coma, thus allowing the body to switch off and focus on the healing process.
The process of being brought out of such a medically induced coma will likely be a long one, according to Schumacher’s manager. Although doctors report seeing “encouraging signs” from neurological tests, others contend it is unlikely Schumacher will ever return to his former state of health.
Colin Shieff, neurosurgeon at the National Hospital for Neurology and Neurosurgery in London, who was quoted in a blog by NPR, stated, “It is generally accepted that the longer a patient is in a reduced state of consciousness, the less likely they are to make a good recovery…It is still possible to regain consciousness, but this is far from certain.”