Wife and father keep vigil at the bedside of Schumacher
Michael Schumacher's wife has returned to her husband's hospital bedside to maintain the family vigil after his skiing accident.
She was convinced by other family members to have a night out on Wednesday to help her recover. His father, Rolf, and brother Ralf also visited the hospital yesterday and were at the racing driver's bedside.
Corinna Schumacher has kept a vigil at her husband's bedside in intensive care since his accident on Sunday morning in the French resort of Meribel.
He hit some concealed rocks and crashed with such force that his helmet reportedly broke in two.
The former Formula One champion married Corinna in 1995. The couple have two children, Gina-Marie (16) and Mick (14).
Sabine Kehm, Schumacher's manager, said: "Corinna, of course, is really not good. But she is trying to be strong for Michael, to give him support and not allow negative thoughts to reach him."
Schumacher, who turns 45 today, remains in an artificial coma. He is on the fifth floor of the hospital in an intensive care room on his own. Security guards are stationed outside the intensive care department.
The former driver's family have surrounded his bed with lucky charms and keepsakes. The ceramic amulet his wife gave Schumacher when they were married has been placed by his bed. Schumacher is said to have refused to race without it.
Other sentimental tokens include his daughter's hairbrush and a gold cross from his son.
Doctors performed two operations on Schumacher late on Monday night and early on Tuesday, improving his condition but leaving his hopes of recovery uncertain.
Schumacher's helmet split in two and he suffered a fractured skull and multiple brain lesions.
Surgeons had to drill holes into his skull to remove liquid that had accumulated between the cranium and brain tissue.
The presence of the helmet may have saved Mr Schumacher's life but he is still at risk of memory loss, epilepsy and paralysis as liquids, including blood, could still be blocking his spinal chord.
He is being maintained in an artificially induced coma to allow time for the bruising and swelling in his brain to ease.
Ms Kehm has denied suggestions that Mr Schumacher, who was skiing with his son Mick and a group of friends, had been taking risks.
"They were skiing on pistes, but in the moment that it (the accident) happened, it was not on the piste," she said, adding that Mr Schumacher appeared to have struck a hidden rock and had been thrown against another rock.
The French state prosecutor in Albertville has opened an investigation to try to discover the cause of the accident. (© Daily Telegraph, London)