Comedian Rodney Dangerfield has been in a coma for several weeks following heart surgery, his wife confirmed.
Joan Dangerfield married Rodney in 1993
Joan Dangerfield said on Monday her husband had been able to breathe for himself for the past 24 hours.
She said he had shown signs of awareness, adding she was hopeful he would regain consciousness soon.
Although the 82-year-old's publicist has issued updates on his health since the operation in August, there had been no mention he had fallen into a coma.
"My husband slipped into a light coma a couple of weeks ago while recovering from his heart surgery. His overall condition, however, remains stable," said Joan Dangerfield.
Several co-stars and friends of Dangerfield have visited him in hospital over the past few weeks including Jim Carrey and Roseanne Barr.
Ms Dangerfield added: "After recent visits from his family and close friends, Rodney is starting to show signs of awareness and we are all hopeful that he will regain full consciousness soon."
Dangerfield, whose catchphrase is "I can't get no respect", became known to US audiences during 1960s and 1970s appearances with Ed Sullivan and Dean Martin, and on the Tonight Show.
His movie credits include Little Nicky, Back to School and Caddyshack.