Mauricio Soler returns home after four months in hospital
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Friday, October 14, 2011

Mauricio Soler returns home after four months in hospital

by Ben Atkins at 1:29 PM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling, Injury
 
Colombian finally released from Navarra hospital following severe head injury on Tour de Suisse crash

mauricio solerFour months after suffering serious head injuries in a crash in the Tour de Suisse, Mauricio Soler has finally been released from hospital and allowed to return home, his Movistar team has announced. The Colombian has spent the past three and a half months in the University Hospital of Navarra, having transferred there following two weeks in intensive care at St Gallen in Switzerland.

“I feel improvement every single day,” said Soler, “though it's true that some days I seem like I’m taking a step back, and that always discourages you. For example, I'm concerned I get tired too soon when walking."

Soler’s wife Patricia has been a constant companion at his side as he recovered from the severe cranioencephalic trauma with cerebral edema, which he suffered as he hit a spectator and a crash barrier shortly after the start of the sixth stage of the Swiss race.

“He gets tired because he makes too many demands on himself," she said. "Doctors tell us that the spirit of a cyclist is also serving him well for his recovery."

Soler himself confirms this: “I'm putting all my energy into this, but it has to be this way, I don't see any other one."

Soler has now returned to his Spanish home in Pamplona, but it will still be some time before he can return to Colombia. Whether or not the rider, who won a mountain stage and the mountains jersey of the 2007 Tour de France, will be able to return to the peloton is unclear.

“We have to be patient, only time will tell about that, he said. It would be fantastic to return riding, but now I'm most interested on my own recovery."

Like Soler, the Movistar team is in no hurry to make that decision right now, with more emphasis put on the Colombian rider’s full physical recovery.

“What we're concerned about now is the personal side, not the sporting one,” confirmed team doctor Alfredo Zuñig. “For him, returning to riding his bike is a motivation, but it's still too soon to know whether it'll be possible or not. That's something nobody can assure. For the time being, his progress is still favourable and on the right way, but the rehab has still many months left.

“The best thing is that all steps are taken forward, and his progression since he came to Pamplona has been surprisingly good."

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