Former NBA star and reality TV personality Lamar Odom is on life support, his estranged wife Khloe Kardashian by his side, after spending four days in a brothel.
Authorities have sought a warrant for blood evidence of drugs.
Hospital officials provided no immediate word on the condition of 35-year-old Odom, who was found face down at the Love Ranch in Las Vegas on Tuesday afternoon, according to brothel owner Dennis Hof.
But the Rev Jesse Jackson, who visited Odom at the hospital on Wednesday, said doctors believe he is recovering after being totally unresponsive on Tuesday.
“Apparently from what the doctor said, he was much better off today than yesterday. He at least has some responsiveness now,” Jackson said.
Kardashian and some of Odom’s childhood friends were by his side, and former Lakers teammate Kobe Bryant visited him last night, Jackson said.
“He’s got tubes in him now but we felt inspired by his presence,” he said. “We’re just holding hands and hoping he can bounce back.”
Odom started “throwing up all kinds of stuff” when the 911 operator told them to turn him on his side, Hof told The Associated Press.
Sheriff Sharon Wehrly said investigators sought a warrant to obtain a blood sample to determine if Odom suffered a drug or alcohol overdose.
Hof said Odom arrived alone on Saturday and “spent time socialising with some of my girls,” but wasn’t seen taking any illegal drugs.
“He was polite and reserved, and he told multiple employees that he was there to get some privacy and spend some time relaxing,” he said in a statement.
“He largely kept to himself, and at no time did he engage in any drug use in the presence of anyone in the house. He did drink alcohol from our bar, and was taking some herbal sexual enhancement capsules.
“At his request, he spent Monday evening alone in his suite,” the statement said.
“It’s incredibly sad,” Hof told the AP. “He just wanted to get away, have a good time and relax.”
Odom emerged as one of the most promising basketball talents of his generation after a difficult childhood in Queens, where his mother died of cancer when he was 12 and his father was addicted to heroin.
He eventually won two NBA championship rings and an Olympic medal, and became a star on reality TV.
But his life never seemed free of struggle and tragedy, most tragically the death of his infant son in 2006.
He married Kardashian in 2009, their wedding taped for the E! network, and their marriage chronicled on the Khloe & Lamar show, where Odom appeared to be a romantic partner, very much wanting more children that never came.
Odom appeared on nearly two dozen episodes of Keeping Up with the Kardashians and several instalments of Kourtney & Kim Take Miami, as well as the show with his wife, which aired in 2011 and 2012.
Kardashian filed for divorce in 2013, citing irreconcilable differences.