Community Engagement Core


Community Advisory Board

Community Outreach & Education

Education & Resources

Community Advisory Board

Elizabeth A. Noser

Elizabeth A. Noser

Director of Community Engagement, James C. Grotta, MD Chair in Neurological Recovery and Stroke at the McGovern Medical School. She graduated from the University of Texas at Austin in...

Patricia Lopez

Patricia Lopez

Patricia attended the University of Oklahoma on a golf scholarship, was a four-year letterman and earned a degree in journalism. She accepted her first television job in Houston as an...

Holly Robinson

Holly Robinson

Holly is a stroke survivor, a mentor, the founder of two Houston non-profit organizations, a dear friend and a loving mother. Holly suffered two strokes in April 2012 which left her and...

Tom Gilhooley

Tom Gilhooley

Tom is a stroke survivor from a stroke suffered at the age 42 in October, 2006. Tom grew up in Connecticut and has lived in Houston with his wife and three children for 25 years. He currently...

Wanda Adams

Wanda Adams

Wanda’s mother passed away at the age of 54 from a massive stroke. Devastated and inspired by this life changing ordeal, she pursued a career in helping others while being a wife...

Darrell Pile

Darrell Pile

Darrell earned his master’s degree in Healthcare Administration from George Washington University in 1982 and earned his bachelor’s degree in Business Administration from ...

Education & Resources

We have compiled different resources such as stroke and brain health patient educational materials, information on local resources for stroke survivors and caregivers and helpful links that Houstonians may find helpful!

Education Library

Learn about stroke prevention, treatment and recovery, healthy brain behaviors and tips to keep brain smart. See our library of educational materials and links to educational resources.

Local Resources

Do you know what resources are available in Houston for stroke survivors and caregivers? See our listing of available resources.

Stroke Research

Do you know what is involved in clinical research? Do you want to know about ongoing stroke related research? Interested in participating in research. Get the answers to these questions and more.

Click here to jump to the resources section.

What is a stroke?

A stroke or a brain attack occurs when a blood clot blocks a blood vessel or when a blood vessel bursts, interrupting blood flow to an area of the brain.

There are two main types of stroke:

  • An ischemic stroke occurs when the blood vessel is blocked. This is the most common type of stroke.
  • A hemorrhagic stroke (brain bleed) occurs when a blood vessels breaks. This type of stroke is less common.

What happens to the brain when a stroke occurs?

The brain needs oxygen in the blood to survive, when the blood flow is disrupted, the cells in the part of the brain that were receiving this blood can die. These cells usually die within minutes to a few hours after the stroke starts. When cells die, chemicals are released that can cause even more cells to die. This is why there is a small window of opportunity for treatment of ischemic stroke.

The most important thing to remember is that the earlier a stroke victim gets to the emergency department, the better the chance that they will be able to receive treatment that stops or reduces the amount of brain damage from the stroke.

When brain cells die, functions that were under control of the dying brain are lost. These include functions such as language, speech, movement, and sensation. The specific abilities lost or affected depend on where in the brain the stroke occurs and on the size of the stroke. For example, someone who has a small stroke may experience only minor effects such as weakness of an arm or leg. On the other hand, someone who has a larger stroke may be left paralyzed on one side or lose his/her ability to express and process language. Some people recover completely from less serious strokes, while other individuals lose their lives to very severe strokes.

What are the most common symptoms of stroke?

  1. Sudden numbness or weakness of face, arm or leg, especially on one side of the body
  2. Sudden confusion, trouble speaking or understanding
  3. Sudden trouble seeing in one or both eyes
  4. Sudden trouble walking, dizziness, loss of balance or coordination
  5. Sudden severe headache with no known cause

Other important but less common stroke symptoms

  • Sudden nausea or vomiting
  • Brief loss of consciousness or period of decreased consciousness (fainting, confusion, convulsions or coma)


Alzheimer's Disease

Brain Basics

Brain Information: Kids

  • Download Mind Boggling

    A result of the collaboration between the Dana Alliance for Brain Initiatives and the Center for Educational Outreach at Baylor College of Medicine

  • Download More Mind Bogglers

    A result of the collaboration between the Dana Alliance for Brain Initiatives and the Center for Educational Outreach at Baylor College of Medicine

  • Download Mind Boggling Workbook

    A result of the collaboration between the Dana Alliance for Brain Initiatives and the Center for Educational Outreach at Baylor College of Medicine



Forgetfulness/Memory Loss

National Institute of Health/National Insitute on Aging - Cognitive Health

Healthy Brain Aging

The Dana Foundation

High Blood Pressure




American Heart Association: About Stroke