Hartstein calms rumours about Schumacher

Michael Schumacher remains in an induced coma following a skiing accident on December 29th. With his doctors, family and his management refusing to give further updates on his health to instead focus on caring for the seven-time champion, rumours about his condition have, naturally, begun to spread.

Former Formula 1 doctor Gary Hartstein has moved to calm fears exacerbated by the rumours, some of which cite 'specialists' who claim the German might never wake from his coma or recover from his injuries.

Whilst that's always a possibility with such an injury, only time will and Hartstein warns that patience is the key when dealing with head trauma such as Schumacher's.

"The guys quoted in the online article I saw have taken care of patients like Michael," he wrote on his blog. "They have not, however, examined Michael, reviewed his scans, etc.

"Because their titles imply that these men are consummate professionals, I've no doubt that they made clear that they were speculating as to possible outcomes. Because that is what they are doing.

"I think that we need to look at this speculation rather like the arrival time estimates of your satnav," he explained. "Their initial estimate is based on some assumptions and statistics. Obviously, as you get closer and closer to the destination the estimate gets better and better."

No matter the outcome, the 58-year-old warned that things certainly wouldn't return to normal after and many years of 'painstaking' work lies ahead.

"It is highly unlikely that when Michael and his family are finished with hospitals, finished with rehab centres, he will be the same Michael we had known until that Sunday.

"Once again, patience, long painstaking work by all concerned, and just maybe our thoughts, best wishes and prayers will be needed. Long periods with no news are perfectly normal, and will remain so. We will likely enter a chronic phase, punctuated by (hopefully) several steps forward and (hopefully) many fewer backward."

Regarding Michael's health, The F1 Times will only be publishing official reports from his family, management or the hospital where he is being treated.