After suffering a serious head injury while skiing with his family in the French Alps, doctors have confirmed that Formula One world champion Michael Schumacher is being kept in a medically-induced coma in a Grenoble hospital.
According to Formula1.com, the 44 year-old German driver fell and struck his head on a rock, resulting in an brain hemorrhage that required immediate emergency surgery. Schumacher was airlifted by helicopter from the site of the accident at the Meribel resort to a Moutiers hospital, before his condition was determined to require treatment at a larger hospital in Grenoble, where he underwent the emergency procedure.
Although it appears he will not require a second surgery, the staff treating Schumacher stressed that his condition is still critical, and that he is not yet out of the woods.
“We can say he is fighting for his life,” the medical team told reporters Monday morning. “We judge him to be in a very serious situation. 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.”
A respected and celebrated seven-time world champion in Formula One racing, Schumacher is also an experienced skier. The longtime Ferrari racecar driver was luckily wearing a helmet, which doctors acknowledge likely saved his life.
For now Schumacher remains under close watch—we’ll be sure to report back as further information on his condition becomes available.