Schumacher out of coma

Michael Schumacher is no longer in a coma and has left the hospital in Grenoble where he had been receiving treatment after being involved in a skiing accident last year.

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The seven-times Formula One world champion had sustained severe head injuries in the incident in the French Alps in December, and was subsequently put into an artificially-induced coma a few days later.

But his management company said in a statement on Monday: "Michael has left the CHU Grenoble to continue his long phase of rehabilitation. He is not in a coma anymore."

It has been 170 days since Schumacher was injured following his fall off piste in the French Alpine resort of Meribel.

Schumacher initially required surgery to remove a haematoma from his brain, but despite its success, the 45-year-old was forced to remain in a coma under sedation.

Official reports after the initial frenzy surrounding Schumacher's status have been few and far between, prompting a number of scare stories regarding his future.

Prior to today the last update on Schumacher's condition had been in early April which stated he was showing of "moments of conciousness".

The time in between without any further statement, however, had again resulted in doubts as to whether Schumacher would ever make a complete recovery.

Those doubts will continue to remain for besides the fact Schumacher is now out of a coma and left the hospital, no other information has been provided with regards to his health.

Schumacher's family, however, have at least again offered their since gratitude to all those who have played a part in the process over the past five and a half months.

The statement added: "His family would like to explicitly thank all his treating doctors, nurses and therapists in Grenoble, as well as the first aiders at the place of the accident, who did an excellent job in those first months.

"The family also wishes to thank all the people who have sent Michael all the many good wishes. We are sure it helped him.

"For the future we ask for understanding his further rehabilitation will take place away from the public eye."

Monday's announcement was welcomed by Mercedes, with whom Schumacher raced for three years from 2010 when he made a largely unsuccessful return to racing.

"Encouraging news on Michael's condition this morning. We couldn't ask for a better start to the week. #KeepFightingMichael," the Brackley-based marque said on Twitter.

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