It’s almost five years since the tragic skiing accident which changed Michael Schumacher’s life forever.
On 29 December 2013, the Formula One legend suffered a life-threatening brain injury while skiing in the French Alps and was placed in a medically induced coma for six months.
Schumacher pulled through thanks to two life-saving operations but the full extent of his current condition remains somewhat sketchy.
It was reported earlier this year that Schumacher was receiving around-the-clock care at his home in Switzerland by a team of 15 doctors at nurses. The Sun claimed the cost of such treatment is an estimated £115,000-a-week.
Professor Mark Obermann, Director of the Centre for Neurology at the Asklepios clinic in Seesen, also encouraged the F1 icon’s supporters by urging them not to give up hope back in January.
“According to a Swedish study, between 30 and 40 per cent of patients have regained consciousness within four years,” he revealed, via the Express. “Many can come back to life and see how their children and grandchildren grow up, what plans they have or what else happens in the family or in the circle of friends.”
Schumacher’s family have been keen to keep the full extent of his conditions private - which is entirely understandable - although his fans live in hope that one day they’ll be told the 49-year-old has made a miraculous recovery.
One of the few non-medical personnel to meet Schumacher at his home since the accident is Georg Gänswein, the German archbishop.
Speaking to German newspaper Bild - per the Mirror - the 62-year-old has provided a rare insight into Schumacher’s condition after meeting him at his Swiss home in Gland two years ago.
Gänswein explained that Schumacher still looks the same, although his face has “become a little fuller”.
He went on to explain: "I sat opposite him, took hold of both hands and looked at him.
"He senses that loving people are around him, caring for him and, thank God, keeping the overly curious public away.
“Of course, I include Michael Schumacher and his family in my prayers."
The words of Gänswein, who is one of Pope Francis’s key advisers, should bring some comfort to Schumacher’s fans at least.
Although it’s not the update they were necessarily hoping for, at least Schumacher is apparently comfortable and happy at home surrounded by his loved ones.
Schumacher turns 50 in early January and let’s hope 2019 is the year things suddenly take a real turn for the better.
Keep fighting, Michael.