Bret Michaels improves to stable, still in ICU

Reuters

Posted at Apr 28 2010 09:24 AM | Updated as of Apr 28 2010 05:24 PM

LOS ANGELES – Rock singer and reality television star Bret Michaels remains hospitalized in intensive care after a brain hemorrhage, but his condition has improved to stable from critical, his publicist said on Tuesday.

Michaels, 47, the front man of rock band Poison and a contestant on the current season of "The Celebrity Apprentice", had been in critical condition since being rushed to a hospital last Friday. Doctors diagnosed a massive subarachnoid hemorrhage, or bleeding at the base of his brain stem.

The singer's publicist said Michaels was still undergoing tests but was now in stable condition. He was described on Sunday as suffering from slurred speech and blurred vision.

Michaels' father Wally Sychak told celebrity news site Extra on Tuesday that he had spoken with his son in an Arizona hospital by phone. "He sounded a little slow, but fine. He was talking, not as cheerful as he usually is. But I guess he is under sedation," Extra quoted Sychak as saying.

"They say he's moving his arms and hands. The best as they could expect at this time," he added.

Messages of support from Michaels' celebrity friends and fans have flooded in, causing his official web site to crash or slow under the traffic.

"It's devastating", said Sharon Osbourne, wife of British rocker Ozzy Osbourne and a contestant with Michaels on "Celebrity Apprentice". "Your heart goes out to his family, your heart goes out to him. He's the nicest guy in the world," Osbourne told Us Weekly.

Michaels found fame in the 1980s at the helm of Poison, whose hits included the ballad "Every Rose Has Its Thorn."

He later appeared in VH1's dating contest "Rock of Love" and on the current season of "The Celebrity Apprentice", which was filmed several months ago but is about halfway through its broadcast run on NBC.

Michaels was diagnosed with diabetes as a child and two weeks ago he had an emergency appendectomy. In a blog entry, he called it a "wake-up call to be a little bit more diligent on keeping control of my health."