JERUSALEM - The head of the hospital treating former Israeli prime minister Ariel Sharon as announced that he is now in critical, life-threatening condition from which he is unlikely to rally.
Zeev Rotstein of Tel Hashomer hospital told reporters Thursday that Sharon’s “life is in danger,” with declining function in several vital organs. “I am no prophet, but the feeling of his doctors and his sons… is that there has been a change for the worse,” Rotstein said.
Rotstein, in the first official medical statement on Sharon’s condition after reports on Wednesday that he suffered a kidney malfunction, said doctors expect a deterioration in several life-sustaining organs.
“We are defining his condition as critical, and there is definitely a threat to his life,” he said. “The feeling of everyone… is that this decline is very serious.”
The 85-year-old has been in a coma since suffering a stroke in 2006.
An MRI scan a year ago detected some brain activity, when Sharon was shown photographs of his family and also when asked to imagine his home. But neurologists who carried out the study said he was effectively in a locked in his vegetative state, unable to activate any muscles.
Sharon was one of Israel’s most iconic and controversial figures. In mid-2005, he directed a unilateral withdrawal of Israeli troops and settlers from the Gaza Strip, ending a 38-year military control of the territory. It was a shocking turnaround for a man who had been a leading player in building Jewish settlements in captured territories.
His illness came shortly after he quit the right-wing Likud party to found a centrist faction in the hope of advancing the peace process with the Palestinians.
Source: VOA News