Thursday October 23rd, 2014

A French doctor who treated seven-time Formula One champion Michael Schumacher says he is no longer in a medically-induced coma and predicted a recovery from his skiing accident within three years.

Jean-Francois Payen, the chief of the anesthesiology department at Grenoble University hospital that treated Schumacher for six months in Switzerland after his injury in December 2013, said that Schumacher is making some progress from his injuries, but it will take time for him to heal.

Schumacher, 45, was skiing with his teenage son in the French Alps when he fell, hitting his head on a rock. He is now recovering at his home with his wife and children.

“Life after a head injury is punctuated by stages,” Payen told RTL radio in France. “He predicted a convalescence of one to three years. We hope, but we have to give him time.”

Payen said that Schumacher’s wife, Corinna, played an important role in his recovery.

"His wife is surrounded by excellent advice and has put in place everything to help him get better,” Payen said. “Corinna's someone who is very bound to Michael of course but who has a clear-headedness and a will to help him get better and who is just extraordinary."

Schumacher retired from racing in 2012, but not before setting Formula One records of championships, wins in a career and wins in a season.

- Scooby Axson

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