Read inspiring success stories about how TIRR Memorial Hermann patients returned to independence after neurologic injury or disease.

  • A portrait of TIRR Memorial Hermann patient Wanda Diamond

    Wanda Diamond: Therapy from the Comfort of Home

    February 22, 2021

    As an individual living with Parkinson’s disease, Wanda Diamond has frequent medical appointments. When the COVID-19 pandemic spread across the country, she wanted to find other options for her routine healthcare needs that would minimize potential exposure to the virus. One solution Wanda ...

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  • TIRR Memorial Hermann brain injury patient Corey Nowlin

    Corey Nowlin: Learning to Communicate

    February 19, 2021

    In April 2020, Corey Nowlin suffered a severe head injury. Today, thanks to the TIRR Memorial Hermann’s Disorders of Consciousness program, he’s able to communicate again.

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  • TIRR Memorial Hermann brain injury patient Emily Claire Jackson returns to snow skiing.

    Emily Claire: Back on the Slopes

    February 9, 2021

    Emily Claire Jackson Sanders has been skiing since she was old enough to walk. Her father enjoys taking his wife and three daughters to Steamboat Springs, CO to ski during the winter months. So it was unusual when 20-year-old Emily did not come down the mountain one evening while skiing with her ...

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  • TIRR Memorial Hermann brain injury patient Anthony Velasquez

    Anthony: Working Hard In and Out of the Classroom

    February 9, 2021

    When the final bell of the day rang, 18-year-old Anthony Velasquez walked out of his high school just as he had on every other day. It was October 2019, and he was one of a group of teens crossing the street adjacent to his school when a car unexpectedly drove around a school bus and hit Anthony....

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  • A COVID patient using assistive technology

    Grant Lashley's Long Road Back from COVID-19

    December 28, 2020

    Emergency medicine physician Grant Lashley, MD, is among the many healthcare professionals who contracted COVID-19 while treating patients during the United States’ first wave of virus cases in April 2020. While working the night shift in the emergency department at Abbeville General Hospit...

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  • Ruben enjoying the out doors following rehabilitation

    Ruben: Returning to the Great Outdoors

    August 7, 2020

    The scenery was stunning—waterfalls and streams created an ideal site for hiking. Ruben Menchaca had always loved camping and being out in nature, but this time something was wrong. His lower back was hurting, and not letting up. He thought it was from the long drive he and his wife took in...

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  • Phil Eaton with doctor and physical therapist at TIRR Memorial Hermann

    Phil Eaton: Road to Recovery

    May 1, 2020

    In March 2020, high school principal Phil Eaton was admitted to Memorial Hermann The Woodlands Medical Center with pneumonia. A short time later, he was diagnosed with COVID-19. His condition became serious, and he spent 21 days on a ventilator. After being discharged from acute care, Phil was ex...

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  • Cathy Flowers Thumbnail

    Cathy's Story: Stroke Rehabilitation

    April 16, 2020

    After having a stroke and being rushed into surgery to remove a large portion of her skull to allow for brain swelling, Cathy was accepted into TIRR Memorial Hermann for rehabilitation.

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  • Jaclyn Pelicotte smiling in front of a fountain

    Jaclyn Pellicotte: Small Steps Toward Her Goals

    September 30, 2019

    When Jaclyn was admitted to the TIRR Memorial Hermann Disorders of Consciousness (DoC) Program, she was not responding to any commands. But the first thing the therapist said when she arrived at TIRR Memorial Hermann was, ‘we’re going to get her up.’ At that point Jaclyn had bee...

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  • River Rasmussen with Aryia and his therapist

    River Rasmussen: A Family Finds Hope

    August 10, 2018

    After an automobile accident left him bedridden and unresponsive, River's sister found hope for him with the TIRR Memorial Hermann Disorders of Consciousness Rehabilitation Program.

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  • Anthony Vallone

    Anthony Vallone: Without Stopping

    August 8, 2017

    After a devastating automobile accident that nearly took his life, Anthony Vallone is back at work at Shell Trading with barely a limp, thanks to his strength of character, a supportive family and the orthopedic trauma team at the Memorial Hermann Red Duke Trauma Institute. “I have nothing ...

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  • Dylan Pugh

    Dylan Pugh: In the Best Hands

    August 8, 2017

    Dylan Pugh remembers working that day, coming home and going out again to meet friends. On the drive home later that night, he swerved to avoid an oncoming car and his one-ton Chevy Silverado Duramax left the road, hit a ditch, went airborne and slammed into a tree. The crash occurred on Sept. 29...

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  • Leigh Rozell

    On Making the Breast Cancer Treatment Decision: A Personal Story

    July 19, 2017

    Leigh Rozelle found the lump purely by accident, just three days before Christmas. As she crossed her arms, she felt a golf ball-size knot on the outer side of her left breast. My family practitioner was able to squeeze me into her schedule the very next day,” says Rozelle, who is 38. “When she e...

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  • Gabrielle Giffords

    Rep. Gabrielle Giffords: On the Road to Recovery

    July 13, 2017

    The Mischer Neuroscience Institute took the national stage when U.S. Rep. Gabrielle Giffords was transferred to Memorial Hermann-Texas Medical Center’s Neuroscience Intensive Care Unit on Friday, Jan. 21, 2011 after she was shot in the head. The Arizona congresswoman was shot at pointblank ...

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  • Evelyn Suber

    Evelyn Suber: Like Family

    August 22, 2016

    In July 2013, Evelyn Suber was hospitalized for dehydration – the result of a serious viral infection. At some point during the two weeks she was ill, she noticed numbness in her legs. A month later, when the numbness persisted, neurologist Suresh Roongta, MD, admitted her to Memorial Hermann Gre...

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  • Jacob Smith

    Jacob Smith: Your Attitude Defines Your Future

    August 22, 2016

    Jacob Smith was returning home with other students at his high school, after attending a leadership conference in Corpus Christi for members of Family, Career and Community Leaders of America (FCCLA). The last thing he remembers was buying snacks when the four-car caravan of students and teachers...

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  • Tato Stanley on horse

    Tato Stanley Makes a Statistically Improbable Recovery

    August 22, 2016

    At the end of a family vacation in Snowmass, Colorado, 17-year-old Clay “Tato” Stanley was seriously injured in a snowboarding accident. “They were doing jumps, and Tato lost control on the landing and was immediately paralyzed,” Tato’s mother, Alice Stanley says. Ta...

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  • Scott Carriker

    For Scott Carriker, Form Follows Function

    October 15, 2015

    Scott Carriker was in a bucket truck, changing out an electric utility circuit pole, when he grabbed the wrong wire and suffered an electrical injury that badly burned both his hands. He was admitted to the hospital’s John S. Dunn Burn Center and underwent eight surgeries in 10 days, the la...

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  • Natalie Franker

    Therapy Gives Natalie Fraker Strength and a Boost of Confidence

    September 23, 2015

    A couple of months shy of her fourth birthday, Natalie Fraker’s voice grew a little hoarse. An endoscopic examination by an otolaryngologist revealed a partially paralyzed vocal cord. On biopsy, it was identified as a grade II astrocytoma, a tumor that arises from the star-shaped cells that...

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  • Samantha Shine

    Samantha Shines On

    September 22, 2015

    When Samantha Shine came to TIRR Memorial Hermann Pediatric Outpatient Rehabilitation at the Kirby Glen Center, the 3-year-old was still eating puréed food – very slowly – and was underweight for her age. Six months later, she eats breakfast, lunch and dinner with her family an...

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  • James Durham

    James Durham's Story

    September 22, 2015

    James Durham was on his motorcycle headed home after an employee dinner. “I was about two miles from home. A woman was stopped at a traffic light but didn’t have her blinker on so it seemed that she was trying to make a U-turn,” says Durham. “When she pulled away from the ...

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  • Mikayla Williams

    Mikayla Williams Makes a 180-Degree Turn

    September 22, 2015

    Easter Sunday in April 2014, out of the blue, Mikayla Williams had a seizure – a dramatic occurrence for an otherwise healthy 12-year-old girl. A CT scan and blood tests done at Children’s Memorial Hermann Hospital produced inconclusive results, and Mikayla was sent home with an anti-...

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  • Eileen Bogar

    Eileen Guerinot Bogar Returns to Her Life as an Attorney and Single Mom

    September 1, 2015

    Eileen Bogar’s recovery was not at all what her acute care physicians predicted. After suffering a severe bilateral brainstem stroke in mid-December 2012, she was tucked away in the intensive care unit at a hospital in Houston for five weeks. She was on a ventilator for the first two weeks ...

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  • Jason Roy

    Jason Roy: From Zero to a Hundred

    August 31, 2015

    As a child, Jason Roy wanted to be a baseball player or a police officer. He initially gravitated towards sports, but then shifted gears and joined the Houston Police Department as an officer. Roy, by then a five-year veteran of the department, flipped his squad car several times during a high-sp...

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  • Daquan Minor

    Daquan Minor: The Determination to Win

    August 31, 2015

    Eighteen-year-old Daquan Minor, who suffered a fractured skull and a T-6 incomplete spinal cord injury in an auto accident in February 2013. Two years later, he was a key contributor to the 2015 TIRR Memorial Hermann junior Hotwheels win of the National Wheelchair Basketball Association’s Nationa...

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  • John Keller

    John Keller: Miracle in Progress

    December 31, 2014

    When 33-year-old John Keller was first admitted to TIRR Memorial Hermann on March 26, 2008, he was in a vegetative state. On impact, Keller suffered a fractured skull and pelvis and an intracranial hemorrhage resulting in a severe traumatic brain injury (TBI). Nine days later, he was transferred ...

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  • Justin Lamb

    Rehabilitation for Dysautonomia: TIRR Memorial Hermann and Children’s Memorial Hermann Hospital Collaborate to Treat a Complex Genetic Disorder

    October 24, 2014

    Eighteen-year-old Justin Lamb is one of many patients to benefit from a unique collaboration between TIRR Memorial Hermann and the pediatric neurology and pediatric cardiology services at Children’s Memorial Hermann Hospital. Working together, the two institutions have developed a program t...

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  • Braxton Taylor

    Braxton Taylor: From Total Assist to Independence

    October 24, 2014

    When 20-year-old Braxton Taylor arrived at TIRR Memorial Hermann in August 2013, he was unable to walk, transfer, eat or manage other activities of daily living without total assistance. When he was discharged on Halloween, he could walk with assistance and was independent in most aspects of dail...

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  • Cory Smith

    Cory Smith Rises to the Challenge

    October 22, 2014

    In May 2012, Cory Smith, a straight-A student and star basketball player at Clear Springs High School in Houston, suffered a severe intracranial empyema, an infection that arises most commonly as a complication of sinusitis or otitis, particularly in males in later childhood, adolescence or early...

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  • Wes Brown

    Wes Brown: Back on the Road Again

    October 22, 2014

    Wes Brown was hauling a load of saltwater from an oilfield in East Texas to a nearby disposal site when the tires on the rear axle of his 18-wheeler hit a pothole and bounced onto the shoulder of the road. As he tried to center his trailer, the steer tire on the passenger side hit another pothole...

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  • Peter Aaron and Willa Berry

    The Berry Family Story: Three Kids Inspire a City

    September 22, 2014

    In July 2011, three young siblings lost their parents in a tragic car accident on the way home from summer vacation in Colorado. The Berry family was traveling back to Houston when their vehicle was struck head-on by an SUV that had veered into their lane. The two brothers, Peter and Aaron, who w...

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  • Peter Aaron and Willa Berry

    Three Years After the Accident, the Berry Siblings Return to Children’s Memorial Hermann Hospital

    September 15, 2014

    In July 2011, three young siblings lost their parents in a tragic car accident on the way home from summer vacation. The Berry family was traveling back to Houston when their vehicle was struck head-on by an SUV. The two brothers, Peter and Aaron, sustained serious spinal cord injuries that paral...

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  • Meena Outlaw

    Meena Outlaw: Spinal Cord Injury and Pregnancy

    June 12, 2014

    Meena Dhanjal Outlaw was injured on January 23, 2000, after she stepped onto the balcony of her newly built home and was locked out of her house. Concerned about the safety of her 3-week-old son, Miles, and 3-year-old daughter, Jasmine, she attempted to climb down from the balcony. She ended up f...

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  • Angela Wriggelsworth

    Angela Wrigglesworth: Spinal Muscular Atrophy

    June 12, 2014

    At 16 months of age, Angela Wrigglesworth was diagnosed with spinal muscular atrophy, a progressive motor neuron disease that causes weakness in the arms, legs and torso. This prevented her from walking and she began using a wheelchair at the age of 5 years. She was admitted to the TIRR Memorial ...

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  • Joseph Huerta

    Joseph Huerta: Recovery After a Skiing Accident

    June 12, 2014

    Joseph Huerta and his siblings took off for a skiing trip. As he skied down the hill, Joseph lost his balance and went over a 15-foot cliff hitting his head on a tree. After being rushed to the hospital, going through surgery and being in a coma for 12 days, Joseph beat the odds and regained cons...

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  • Saleh in wheelchair

    Rehabilitation After Cancer

    June 11, 2014 تم تشخيص إصابة صالح الزهراني، من المملكة العربية السعودية، بالسرطان في سن 12 عاماً. وأجريت له جراحة ناجحة لإزالة ورم في جذع المخ وعاد بعدها لممارسة حياته اليومية. وعند بلوغه 25 عاماً، اكتشف الزهراني أن السرطان قد عاوده، ويلزمه إجراء عملية أخرى لإزالة الورم، الذي كان يقع في النخاع المستطيل – ال...

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  • Saleh in wheelchair

    Saleh Alzahrani: Rehabilitation After Cancer

    June 11, 2014

    Saleh Alzahrani was diagnosed with cancer at the age of 12. He underwent a successful surgery to remove a brain stem tumor and then went back to his daily life. At the age of 25, Alzahrani learned that his cancer had returned and another operation was required to remove a tumor, which was located...

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  • Julie Batsche

    Julie Batsche: Decades of Quality Care for MS

    April 2, 2014

    When Julie Batsche was diagnosed with relapsing-remitting multiple sclerosis (RRMS) by Jerry S. Wolinsky, MD, she was fresh out of college. Much has changed since her original diagnosis in 1984, yet one thing has remained a constant in Batsche’s life – her deep respect and admiration ...

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  • Jared Dunten

    Jared Dunten: Traumatic Spinal Cord Injury

    January 27, 2014

    While on a camping trip in the Chisos Mountains in Big Bend National Park, Jared Dunten dove into the Rio Grande with a bar of soap to clean himself up – and hit a sandbar. He woke up in an intensive care unit in Lubbock, Texas, paralyzed from the neck down and breathing with the help of a ventil...

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  • Barry Oakes Family

    Barry Oakes Recovers From Stroke

    January 13, 2014

    In September 2010, 49-year-old Barry Oakes collapsed in his home while walking to the bathroom in the middle of the night. An EMS team rushed him to the hospital, where doctors diagnosed a massive ischemic stroke and administered tPA. The stroke left him with a large basilar artery thrombosis in ...

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  • Jim Hyndman smiling

    Jim Hyndman: No Guts, No Glory

    December 11, 2013

    By the time Jim Hyndman was diagnosed with secondary progressive multiple sclerosis (MS) in 2009, he was unable to walk and suffering intense, painful lower extremity muscle spasms. Today, he stands upright using a walking stick decorated with medallions from his travels. He credits the transform...

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  • Chance Both

    Chance Bothe Survives Near-Deadly Texting and Driving Accident

    September 12, 2013

    In the middle of sending a text, Chance Bothe drove off of a cliff and sustained serious injuries. After spending time in an ICU, he was sent to TIRR Memorial Hermann for rehabilitation where he recovered tremendously. "They would get him outside, and he would play basketball. We would go out and...

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  • Don Mathews

    Don Mathews' Recovery From Brain Damage

    August 6, 2013

    Don Mathews' inspiring story begins on the night of his 21st birthday party in September 1998. A successful student at Sam Houston State University, Don was celebrating with some of his college friends at a lake house on Lake Livingston. Don and his date were on their way to their vehicle, comple...

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  • Laura Snell

    Laura Snell Leg Amputation

    August 6, 2013

    In October 2000, nine days after her second baby was born, Laura Snell became very ill. Doctors at a Houston emergency center diagnosed a urinary tract infection and treated and released her. As she walked to the car, she collapsed. Laura went into septic shock and lapsed into a coma for several ...

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  • Oscar Rangel

    Oscar Rangel: Guillain-Barré Therapy

    August 6, 2013

    Leaving work one day, Oscar noticed his vision was strained in one eye. Over the next few days, Oscar lost vision in one eye and the ability to swallow and stand. He was admitted to a hospital and diagnosed with Guillain-Barré, a rare nervous system disorder that results from nerve damage ...

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  • Scottie

    A Young Boy Benefits From Rehabilitation Following Treatment for Glioblastoma Multiforme

    May 7, 2013

    In February 2008, Tina Bailey scheduled an office visit with her son’s pediatrician when he developed croup and a bad cough. While at the doctor’s office, 22-month-old Scottie exhibited right hand curling and right shoulder drop. Bailey’s pediatrician ordered an MRI, which revea...

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  • Gabrielle Giffords

    Gabrielle Giffords' Extraordinary Journey

    April 10, 2013

    On January 21, 2011, United States Representative Gabrielle Giffords was transferred from the University of Arizona Medical Center to Memorial Hermann-Texas Medical Center’s Neuroscience Intensive Care Unit. Rep. Giffords’ physician team upgraded her condition from serious to good fou...

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  • Dorothy Malone

    Successful Therapy to Help Patient Regain Use of Arm and Leg Following Stroke

    April 9, 2013

    When Malone was stabilized, she was transferred to the hospital’s 23-bed inpatient neurorehabilitation unit for comprehensive care and an aggressive program of physical therapy, occupational therapy and speech/language pathology. Mischer Neurorehabilitation's multidisciplinary team – ...

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  • Moya

    Moya's Story: Cerebral Palsy

    March 26, 2013

    As an infant, Moya was diagnosed with a global developmental delay and, as a toddler, she was diagnosed with cerebral palsy. She was delayed in movements and milestones that a toddler normally accomplishes, such as sitting up, standing and saying a few clear words. Moya had received therapy befor...

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  • Alyssa

    Alyssa: Severe Seizures

    March 26, 2013

    After episodes of shaking and seizures, Alyssa, age 8, was diagnosed with epilepsy in January 2007. Alyssa’s medications were not working; she was forgetting everyday things, even the alphabet. A dancer, she was not able to remember dance steps she had learned, forgot dances she used to perform a...

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  • Brittany

    Brittany's Story: Pediatric Spinal Cord Injury

    March 26, 2013

    In November 2008, Brittany and her family were moving from College Station to Katy when they had an accident on a two-lane road. Brittany, 11, hit the roof of the van and sustained a T5 spinal cord injury, several broken bones, a collapsed lung and other internal injuries. She was rushed to Memor...

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  • Curran

    Curran: Language Delay

    March 26, 2013

    In November 2008, 2-year-old Curran started treatment for a language delay. When he started treatment, he was nonverbal and communicated only by using hand gestures and vocalizations. The speech-language pathologist suggested Curran’s family encourage English as his primary language, and after pr...

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  • Dan Hammers

    Dan Hammers: Infertility in SCI

    March 25, 2013

    In June 2012, Dan Hammers marked the 20th anniversary of an accident that changed his life. At the age of 19, he dove off a 10-foot building into a pool containing 4 feet of water. Hammers, who is a C4 quadriplegic, considers himself better off for the experience. In 2009, after seven years of ma...

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  • Kara Beatty

    Kara Beatty: Recovery from Neurotrauma

    February 5, 2013

    Kara Beatty was on her way to summer school at a community college when a truck ran a red light and T-boned her car. She lost consciousness, and emergency responders had to use the “jaws of life” to free her from the wreckage. She remained in a coma for three days in the Neurotrauma ICU, with a m...

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  • Logan Schaefer

    Logan Schaefer: Teenager Recovering From Traumatic Brain Injury

    February 4, 2013

    On July 12, 2010, 14-year-old Logan Schaefer had a wakeboarding accident that left him unconscious, unresponsive and seizing following a traumatic brain injury. After an emergency craniotomy to relieve pressure on the brain caused by a subdural hematoma, the following day Logan awakened just long...

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  • Roberta

    Roberta Reclaims Her Independence with Rehabilitation

    January 29, 2013

    While Roberta was enjoying time on her daughter’s porch in Sealy, Texas, her family became concerned that she did not look well. She had been having some headaches, but nothing that seemed out of the ordinary. On September 21, after getting what her family described as a “glazed and f...

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  • McKenzie

    McKenzy Winne: Traumatic Brain Injury

    January 10, 2013

    On September 15, 2007, McKenzy Winne was riding with two friends on the tailgate of a pickup truck. Suddenly and without warning, McKenzy was thrown from the tailgate. She tried to stand up, then collapsed in the street. After being flown to the Red Duke Trauma Institute at Memorial Hermann-Texas...

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  • Kevin Everett

    After Being Paralyzed During an NFL Game, Kevin Everett is Standing Tall

    December 23, 2012

    When Buffalo Bills’ football player Kevin Everett arrived at TIRR Memorial Hermann in September 2007 after suffering spinal cord injury on the field, he was paralyzed from the neck down. After months of aggressive therapy led by a group of physicians, physical therapists and occupational th...

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  • Read about Lexie Pediatric Spinal Cord Injury

    Lexie's Story: Pediatric Spinal Cord Injury

    December 23, 2012

    Eleven-year-old Lexie Bolds was having fun visiting a friend in Jasper, Texas, when she was involved in an accident that left her with a broken neck and arm. She injured vertebrae C2-C4 and injured her spinal cord at C4. Rushed to Memorial Hermann-Texas Medical Center by Life Flight® helicopt...

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  • Meena Outlaw

    Meena Outlaw Spinal Cord Injury

    January 23, 2001

    Meena Dhanjal Outlaw se lesionó el 23 de enero de 2000, luego de salir al balcón de su casa recién construida y quedar atrapada sin poder entrar. Preocupada por la seguridad de su hijo Miles, de 3 semanas, y su hija Jasmine, de 3 años, intentó descender por el ...

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