Schumacher has made progress, says doctor


PARIS (Reuters) - A doctor who treated Michael Schumacher after his skiing accident has said the seven times Formula One champion has made progress but his recovery could still take years.

"I have observed some progress but I would say we have to give him time," Jean-Francois Payen told France's RTL radio station on Thursday.

"The same as for other patients, we are in a timescale that goes from one to three years, so we must be patient."

Schumacher, 45, suffered severe head injuries in a fall while skiing in Meribel in the French Alps last December and was treated initially at Grenoble hospital.

He was then moved to a hospital in Lausanne and was discharged last month to continue his rehabilitation at home in the Swiss town of Gland.

Payen said he had continued to treat the foremr Ferrari and Mercedes driver in Switzerland, but divulged no medical details other than saying the German was not in a coma and nor was he in a 'vegetative' state.

"He is in very favourable conditions, his wife has excellent advisors and has put in place everything he needs to move forwards."

Payen said Schumacher's wife Corinna had shown "extraordinary willpower" and had a clear understanding of what was needed and the road that lay ahead.

(Reporting by Alan Baldwin in London, editing by Toby Davis)

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