Formula One legend Michael Schumacher is likely “very altered and deteriorated” six years on from suffering serious head injuries after a skiing accident in 2013 and will be a “very different person from who we remember", according to a leading neurosurgeon.
Schumacher, 51, has not been seen in public since suffering a traumatic brain injury while skiing off-piste in the French Alps.
He was placed in a medically induced coma for six months until June 2014 and has since been treated privately at his home in Switzerland. Little is known about his recovery.
However, leading surgeon Nicola Acciari, who is based in Bologna, has told an Italian newspaper that the seven-time Formula One world champion will now be a completely different man and is unlikely to truly recover from his injuries.
“We must imagine a person very different from the one we remember on the track, with a very altered and deteriorated organic, muscular and skeletal structure,” she told Contro Copertina.
“All as a result of the brain trauma he suffered.”
The neurosurgeon’s warning comes after Jean Todt, his former manager at Ferrari, last year assured fans that Schumacher was “still fighting”.
“I’m always careful with such statements, but it’s true. I saw the race together with Michael Schumacher at his home in Switzerland,” he said.
“Michael is in the best hands and is well looked after in his house. He does not give up and keeps fighting.
“His family is fighting just as much and of course our friendship cannot be the same as it once was just because there’s no longer the same communication as before.”