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Life After Stroke

Helping you find your Path

Stroke is a leading cause of death and disability worldwide. It kills more women than breast cancer and more men than prostate cancer.

-Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

Life after stroke affects each survivor differently. Your recovery path involves making physical as well as mental changes. Some deficits may be greater than others.

Communication disorders can appear following stroke or other brain injury including aphasia and apraxia of speech.  For Agnes, her speech center was largely affected leaving her with both of these disorders.  Extensive speech therapy is key in finding new ways to communicate.  Technology provides many ways in which a survivor can continue brain training at home, and Tactus Therapy offers many applications for your iOS devices. 

However, some these apps have a monthly fee and many cannot afford $20 a month extra.  Pathways Stroke Foundation needs your support to give hope to a survivor that they can have access to the programs. Your small donation can provide months of speech therapy where at one time it was a choice between therapy and medication.


Remember, your brain is always healing.  

Agnes has made incredible strides with the support of her speech advisors, as well as the support of her family..


Depression is twice as prevalent among stroke survivors as the general population which can lead to a second stroke. Pathways Stroke Foundation is committed to partnering hospitals and private practices to provide personal companions to reduce the the feeling of isolation and hopelessness

A healthy body keeps a healthy mind sharp.  When recovering from a stroke, a healthier lifestyle is needed to recovery your mind and body to the best it can be.

You can find information about your steps into staying healthy and preventing another stroke here.

Stroke Survivor Inspirational Stories

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It was the first snowfall of December 2020, a day that began like any other.  Lola was sipping a cup of her favorite Haitian hot cocoa.  Little did she now that by  evening, she would have suffered six seizures due to a stroke.  Lola's life had changed forever that day.

Lola Remy  

Avi Golden  
Paramedic in North Shore Long Island Jewish Health System EMS

In the year 2007, the only word I was able to speak was “Michael.”

I have no idea why this word was exclusive to my brain.


I was working as a paramedic in Long Island and preparing to go to medical school. My father has a condition called Mitral Valve Prolapse, which resulted in him having a surgical procedure. Because the condition is hereditary, I opted to have a voluntary surgical procedure on my heart to preserve my overall health. 95 percent of patients who go through this treatment (possibly less) have a uncomplicated recovery. However, in my case it resulted in a stroke.


Everybody went to the hospital to visit me.

At first I was anxious, would I ever come out of this? Was this my life now? I was was nervous that I could no longer pursue my dream of becoming a doctor.But then, I found the strength to keep going. I decided that I had no choice but to get better.

In the year 2007, the only word I was able to speak was “Michael.” I have no idea why this word was exclusive to my brain.

A lot of people who have aphasia can only communicate in one word. This is relatively common. It’s ironic that I was diagnosed with this condition, considering that I had studied it myself as a paramedic.It has been nine long years since my surgery and I am still working diligently to regain fluid speech. I attend O.T. and P.T. four days a week and I am still hopeful that I can pursue my previous goal of attending medical school.

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In my spare time, I volunteer and visit stroke patients in hospital settings and disability sports groups to share my story with them.

Everybody is different. Diagnoses are different.

Some people have Global Aphasia – this means that they will never talk again. They can understand everything that you’re saying but they cannot respond. Others have the type of Aphasia where they are talking and believe that they are making sense but others cannot understand what they’re saying. Everybody’s different and has their own path. I encourage you to find yours.


Alyson was a first and second grade  teacher in the New York City School system when she suffered her stroke on September 28, 2013. Due to unknown genetic factors, Alyson suffered a left side brain attack.  Initially, Alyson was fully paralyzed and spent two weeks in the hospital.  After much therapy, she has regained most of her mobility as well as most of her speech.

Alyson spends time speaking at events telling her story and raising awareness of the severity of stroke.   


Alyson Bernhardt

Teacher at NYC Department of Education

Greater New York City Area

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Mitch Raymond

Physical Therapist   West Central New York

When Mitch was 5 years old, he was suffering from seizures.  The doctors had diagnosed Mitch with milk allergeries. As his seizures continued to worsen, it was finally determined by a fourth doctor at the University of Massachusetts the Mitch had a benign brain tumor. At 6 years old, Mitch suffered a hemorrhagic stroke.


As with many major strokes, Mitch was left with many deficits.  As a little boy to the man he is today, Mitch never wavered on his journey to recovery.  His story is truly inspirational that with hard work, support of loved ones and positive thoughts, recovery to a normal life is possible.  

Brett Patterson

North Carolina

Brett suffered a stroke from the virus varicella-zoster; also known as shingles.  This particular virus flowed into his spinal fluid causing a brain bleed followed by a stroke.  

Although this particular stroke is rare, researchers found that shingles increased the risk of stroke, transient ischemic attack (TIA) and heart attack later in life, especially for adults who had shingles before the age of 40. Those aged 18 to 40 who had had shingles were 74% more like to suffer from a stroke, 2.4 times more likely to have a TIA and 50% more likely to have a heart attack later in life.

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