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Michael Schumacher in critical condition after skiing accident

GRENOBLE, FRANCE (BDCi) — Doctors treating Michael Schumacher refused Monday to predict an outcome for the seven-time Formula One champion, saying they were taking his critical head injury “hour by hour” following a skiing accident.

Schumacher remained in critical condition after undergoing brain surgery following a skiing accident in the French Alps a day earlier, the doctors said.

The Grenoble University Hospital Center said the retired racing champion arrived at the clinic in a coma and underwent immediate surgery for a traumatic head injury.

In a news conference held Monday morning, chief anesthesiologist Jean-Francois Payen said Schumacher was “fighting for his life.”

“We judge him to be in a very serious situation,” Payen said, according to a BBC translation.”We cannot tell what the outcome will be yet. We are working hour by hour, but it’s too early to say what is going to happen and to have a prognosis.

We think his helmet did help; without a helmet he wouldn’t be here now.”

Payen said Schumacher was being kept in an artificial coma and a lowered temperature while doctors work to supply oxygen to the brain and reduce outside stimuli.

Schumacher fell while skiing in Meribel earlier Sunday and hit his head on a rock, according to a statement from the resort. Schumacher’s 14-year-old son was skiing with his father when the accident happened, the resort said.

Schumacher is the most successful driver in Formula One history with seven drivers’ championships and 91 race wins.

After initial success with the Benetton team, he moved to Ferrari and helped turn the Italian team into the sport’s dominant force. After retiring in 2006, he made a comeback in 2010 racing for Mercedes for three years.


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