Doctors discuss when to bring Sharon out of coma

Friday, January 06, 2006 | 
Like the warrior he has long been known as, Prime Minister Ariel Sharon battled for his life through a weekend of major surgeries and dour assessments after suffering a severe stroke and cerebral hemorrhaging. He was even said to have improved slightly. Dr. Jose Cohen, one of Sharon’s neurosurgeon, said the chances Sharon will survive are “very high. He is a very strong man, and he is getting the best care.” But he said, “He will not continue to be prime minister, but maybe he will be able to understand and to speak.” Doctors ordered more testing before deciding whether to bring Sharon out of his induced coma. He remains in critical but stable condition.

The Argentinian-born Cohen, 39, immigrated to Israel four years ago. He told reporters he had never met Sharon before and spoke of the gravity of treating the prime minister. “If you give everything as a surgeon and realize that everything depends on you, you feel responsible. … He is a true fighter. I admire him more every day.”

Doctors will not know until after Sharon regains consciousness the extent to which his brain has been damaged. Sharon remained heavily sedated and on a respirator.

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