Schumacher’s condition “slightly improved” after second operation

2013 F1 season

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Doctors treating Michael Schumacher at a hospital in Grenoble say his condition has improved following a second operation on his head injuries last night.

Schumacher underwent a two-hour procedure at 10pm last night to evacuate a hematoma on the left-hand side of his brain. Surgeons took advantage of a “window of opportunity” to operate on the hematoma, one of several he incurred in a skiing accident on Sunday.

Doctors said the operation was possible because the hematoma was in accessible location and presenting minimal risk. A scan following the operation showed a slight improvement in Schumacher’s condition compared to yesterday and no further worsening of the initial lesions.

However doctors cautioned Schumacher is still in a critical condition and is not yet out of danger. He remains in an artificial coma with multiple lesions on his brain, which are smaller in size than the one operated on yesterday, and are being monitored hour-by-hour.

Schumacher’s family remain at his bedside and were consulted prior to his second operation yesterday, which was performed with their consent.

The medical team said the extent of Schumacher’s injuries showed he suffered an “extremely hard… very violent” impact during his accident.

They advised further updates will be given only when there is a change in Schumacher’s condition.

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Keith Collantine
Lifelong motor sport fan Keith set up RaceFans in 2005 - when it was originally called F1 Fanatic. Having previously worked as a motoring...

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48 comments on “Schumacher’s condition “slightly improved” after second operation”

  1. Come on Schumi!

    1. FORZA, Schumacher!!!

  2. Great news!! I think and hope he´s gonna make it!!! This guy is a true champ!! Even battling death he doesn´t give up! Go Schumi Go!!!!!!

    1. In that sense, anyone who fights to live is a true champ!

      1. @joepa Indeed!! I´m just so happy with these news!!

  3. Imagine the impact he has suffered so much although he was wearing a helmet! Though he is not still out of danger, glad to hear there is a slight improvement in his condition.

    1. His PR rep talked a bit about the details and it seems it happened on a regular slope but due to the bad snow conditions the rocks weren’t all covered. And it seems he “just” made a turn but was catapulted head first against one of the rocks.
      A freak-accident quite common with carving skis – when you lose control it acts like a catapult releasing a lot of energy at once even if you aren’t that fast – that’s why these head, shoulder, back and knee injuries increased so much over the last decade among professionals and amateurs.

      I keep hoping that from now on we’ll hear only good news about him.

  4. We must just pray for his recovery

    1. I’ll put a “Like” on Facebook.

  5. Fingers crossed for Schumi! I hope he recovers fully.

  6. Glad to hear some positive news.

  7. Good news, good to hear his situation is going in the right direction *knocks twice on wooden table*

  8. Very conclusive article, Keith. From most of the reports one without expert medical knowledge couldn’t connect the dots on the specifics of his situation, particularly its development, but from this one I was able to do so quite clearly.

    Lacking cohesion on the subject, I initially thought the second operation was necessary because of what an alleged expert said on the situation somewhere that Schumacher’s injuries could trigger a vicious circle of increased swelling and pressure build-up. I mean, I thought he got in this circle and the aim of the op to “decrease swelling” was because it began to build up.

    From this article though, I get the impression that the swelling – AFAIK caused by one type of these lesions – hasn’t worsened actually, and the surgeons simply accelerated the recovery process by removing the largest one, which – luckily – was relatively easily accesible.

    All in all, great news, considering that he’s so so close to the edge. I really really hope he pulls through. Fingers crossed.

  9. I will take any tidbits of actual good news at this point, considering we had been told that it was most likely going to be a case of no news being good news. Will give me some peace of mind heading into the new year. :)

  10. Schumacher’s manager Sabine Kehm gave a little more context to the accident, which might explain why Schumacher went off-piste: apparently, another skiier had a fall, and Schumacher tried to cross the off-piste field to get to them when he hit a rock and fell.

    And according to Kehm, a journalist tried to get into Schumacher’s room in the hospital by dressing up as a priest.

  11. Good news i think. His family might well be in for a shock when he wakes though. He could easily be reverted to a 10 year old, the brain is a funny thing and it’ll take a good few years before he’s anywhere near his old self.

    1. What I worry is that he may loose his ability to drive fast.

      1. @full-throttle-f1 Actually, this is one of the things I’m perfectly okay for him to lose. It’s not like he’s competing professionally anymore. As long as he is able to live a long and healthy life (with minimal to no loss of bodily functions), and he’s able to take care of his family, I’d be more than happy with that.

        1. Very true @journeyer. We have last too many champions in the past. At this stage, it is important that Schumi wins this battle.

      2. I think driving a car is the least of concerns at the moment.

        I just hope he lives and holds on to all of his mental capacity.

  12. Come on champ. You can make it! All our prayers are with you in this all important fight.

  13. Great news. Hope he makes a full recovery.

  14. I think this is as good as we can get atm.
    We should prepare for slow slow updates for days or weeks.
    This can take some time. Just hope we can keep getting positive news and he
    can pull trough as good as possible!

  15. OmarR-Pepper (@)
    31st December 2013, 12:48

    How long did Massa’s induced comma take? I know it was a different accident, but I just try to get a reference. Great to know Schumi is in the recovery process. Let’s think positive.

    1. @omarr-pepper
      According to this he woke up from the coma Monday morning. But when he was put in coma is a little unclear. It seems to suggest that he was first put in coma after a CT scan on Sunday morning.
      But this
      article from Saturday, suggests that he would have been put into coma Saturday afternoon.

      What I read from this, is that he would have been put into coma on Saturday afternoon, woken up for a scan on Sunday morning, and then put back into coma until Monday morning.
      So about 36 hours in total is my very rough estimate.

    2. @omarr-pepper, @mads – Please bear in mind that these are two totally different situations, with two totally different injuries. Massa’s recovery time is in no way representative of what Schumacher’s will be.

  16. 1) It’s a bit unnerving to think someone’s condition can improve yet still be classified as in “critical” condition. Methinks the medical staff had considered classifying MSC as “grave” on Sunday, and held back out of respect of the stir it would cause and the inevitable extra stress that stir would cause for his family. If that’s the case, I respect that staff even more for their efforts this week. If not, well, I don’t mind admitting being wrong.

    2) The reporter who attempted to enter the operating room disguised as a priest needs a lifetime ban from any FIA-sanctioned or even FIA-related events. Zero exceptions, full stop, done.

    3) Ok Michael, you had to start from the pitlane, but you’ve passed some backmarkers. This is France, and if you can win anywhere, it’s here. Go get 92, it’s a long race, we’re all behind you.

    1. 3) Ok Michael, you had to start from the pitlane, but you’ve passed some backmarkers. This is France, and if you can win anywhere, it’s here. Go get 92, it’s a long race, we’re all behind you.

      Great way to put it!

      1. He’s passed Max Chilton for 21st, now on to the Caterhams!

      2. He is as always adapting his style to the race track condition, and now after lap 1 he is improving he will soon begin lapping the entire field 1s a lap !!!!!!

    2. 2) The reporter who attempted to enter the operating room disguised as a priest needs a lifetime ban from any FIA-sanctioned or even FIA-related events. Zero exceptions, full stop, done.

      Agree 100% @spdoyle17. That maggot might have been trying to grab images to sell to the highest bidder.

      What he tried to do wasn’t journalism; it was an attempt to violate someone’s privacy at a time of tragedy. These sort of people are beneath contempt.

  17. I am really happy to hear this news. Hope this trend continues. My two cents on Michael, to my generation (I’m 30 now) he ‘was’ F1. I knew him before I knew the sport. So, in a way you can say that he was even bigger than the sport. Having said that, I never could warm up to him for obvious reasons. But, it all changed when he came back with Mercedes. It was like he had spent his sabbatical in Tibet. He was a totally different person. He was much more human, not because he was getting beaten, but because he was – genuine. I can’t think of a better word. Schumi ’91-’06 won championships, Schumi ’10-’12 won my heart. Watching this now….it got a little dusty in the room.

    1. I feel totally the same.

  18. Michael Schumacher is my F1 hero. I was born in the Portuguese speaking country Angola where I grew up until I left to spend 10 years in Portugal. Back in early 1990s when I started watching F1, Senna, from another sister Portuguese speaking nation was the boy to sheer for, but not in my case, I liked Senna but my fave was Nigel Mansell, his skills were undeniable and back then I did not know much about F1 to understand the superiority of Newey designed FW14 in 1992, my hero was crushing the opposition all due to his ability, period. Then Mansell left F1 and I was in need of new hero and he showed up in style, young Schumacher was an obvious choice for me, fast and ultra competitive giving F1 god Ayrton Senna a hard time won me over. After two WDC with Benetton those years of drought at Ferrari did not kill my hope, then Schumi and the team of Ross Brawn, Todt and Byrne created a well oiled machine that almost killed the sport due to their ego destructive dominance, but for me all those “boring” Sundays were days of pure joy because Michael Schumacher was winning and I hope he wins this much tougher race too.

    Happy new year sisters and brothers. I’m sure the first days of 2014 will be much better than the last days of 2013. #fingerscrossed

    1. feliz ano novo, happy new year 2014 to you too, friend. the battles schumi had getting performances out of the no-hope soap box ferrari of his time (especially his incredible win at barçelona in 1996 as “rain god”) will hopefully give him that tiny extra edge to get out of this ultimate challenge.

  19. If anyone can use their force of will to survive such an injury, it is Michael Schumacher. His determination and physical fitness will work in his favour, and I feel that he will make it. All we can do is wait and hope for the best. Thanks to f1fanatic, we also have a dignified place to comment on this difficult situation.

  20. Thankfully some good news from Grenoble. I know he isn’t out of danger yet, that’s been made crystal clear, but let’s hope his situation keeps improving.

  21. Glad to see it’s positive news, still saddened that it’s not as big an improvement as I was hoping for. Slow, steady improvements are okay, though, as long as we get MSC back. Definitely in my thoughts nearly all day, hopefully we’ll see more positive news shortly.

  22. I sincerely hope that he makes a full recovery. He is a legend and I am grateful for being able to watch him race over the last 21 years (give or take), both on TV and in person. Thinking and praying for Michael’s recovery and for his family at this horrible time.

  23. Forza Shumi, i’m pretty confident that he is flat out now fighting the race of his life which i hope he will win like the other 91 wins , Shumacher the man who inspired millions of fans and brought them to the sport and i’m proud that i’m one of them, believe me back in the early 00’s in my country Tunisia i remember my friends and many other people watching every GP just to watch Michael, they knew nothing about F1 and they still don’t know anything about F1 but what stole their attention was Michael, a bit of relief to hear that he is improving
    Forza Shumi !!!!!!!!

  24. I think all of these articles should be linked to the appropriate posts by Gary Hartstein. In this case, tuesday-press-conference-take-1.

    I’m pretty sure he’s been linked to in previous articles but I think it deserves a constant reminder.

  25. Some good news at least. I hope that famous fighting spirit hasn’t been damaged by the accident.

  26. I really hope you pull through Schumi! Hang in there bud

  27. My thoughts are with Schumi and his family as I celebrate the New Year. There are so many touching comments by everyone on this site and around the world, it is great to see the F1 community pull for an ex-champion.

  28. you shrugged off the hysterical hatred of the british media which twisted every one of your words when you couldn’t yet speak engl. just because you made their damon hill look like a driver with a learner’s permit. you were unlucky to inherit ayrton senna when he couldn’t keep up with you anymore. now it’s the ultimate battle for u schumi. if anyone can get through the worst, it’s you! hoping that this time all are supporting you!

  29. Good to hear any good news on Schumi. I lost my dad on Monday in a car accident in Italy, and any good news is something right now. :(

    1. Wow, very sorry for your loss Laine :-(

      I hope you and you’re family are doing ok.

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