Injured Australians on the mend

South Australian cyclist Alexis Rhodes, 20, is sitting up in bed and talking to family and friends a day after regaining consciousness in the intensive care unit of the University Clinic in Jena, Germany.

But Australian Institute of Sport Director, Professor Peter Fricker, says she will be in intensive care for at least another day or two.

"She's quite alert and chatty and is being cheeky which is good," said Prof. Fricker. "In a day or so the doctors will assess whether she can be transferred to a general ward but all the indications are positive.

"Doctors won't put a time frame on her release from hospital at this stage but they are pleased there are no signs of neurological damage," said Prof. Fricker. "She has been kicking her legs up and down and carrying out passive movements as requested by the doctors."

Tasmanian Louise Yaxley, 23, who regained consciousness on Saturday, may undergo more surgery as early as today to treat her arms and one leg.

"Louise is reasonably well orientated but still fairly uncomfortable with her injuries but so far there are no signs of complications," said Prof. Fricker. "She is really still coming round from the sedation and anaesthetics and she'll be in intensive care a little longer.

"Perhaps tomorrow she'll undergo more surgery by way of skin grafts to both arms and one leg," he said. "Doctors may also replace, if possible in the same operation, the fixation device in her right elbow with one that is hinged and allows some more movement."

Meanwhile Sydneysiders Kate Nichols, 20, and Katie Brown, 21, along with team mate Queensland's, Lorian Graham, 27, have begun planning their return home.

"All three will be heading back to Australia over the next two weeks or so and will continue their rehabilitation at home," said Prof. Fricker.

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