Ashley Sparks of Pikeville experienced every mother’s worst fear last April when her two children and their grandmother were involved in an automobile accident.

Sparks recalls her day starting like an ordinary day.

“I dropped my two sons, Caden and Brady, off at school,” said Sparks. “I took pictures of them with their science projects and kissed them and told them to have a wonderful day.”

She made arrangements for her children’s grandmother, Pam Ratliff, to pick them up from school and went to work as usual.

What happened next was something no one ever wants to experience.

Ratliff picked up her two grandsons from school. On their way home, they were struck by a motor vehicle on US 23, causing injuries to all.

“I answered my phone and heard complete panic from Pam telling me about the accident,” Sparks said. “I could not believe it and rushed to be with my kids.”

All three were transported by ambulance to Pikeville Medical Center (PMC) for advanced care.

Upon arrival, PMC Trauma Surgeon, Rudy Judhan, MD, assessed their injuries.

“In a situation where seconds matter, we knew we had to move quickly and effectively to determine these patient’s needs,” said Dr. Rudy Judhan.

Ratliff had suffered multiple bilateral rib fractures, lacerations to her right knee, and fracture to her left leg. Caden sustained a hand fracture and aortic dissection, a life-threatening injury.
Brady suffered multiple bruises and required observation for any additional damages that may have occurred during the accident.

PMC physicians and staff determined that Ratliff had approximately ten broken ribs. She would need to be hospitalized and undergo a knee repair with PMC Orthopedic Surgeon, Chad Martin, DO.

Brady was observed and determined to be well enough to be discharged to go home.

Caden was facing a severe life-threatening injury. He was stabilized and transferred to a Pediatric Surgeon to repair damage to the aortic dissection.

Dr. Judhan said that only three percent of people live with the injury Caden sustained during this accident.

“Our team performed the initial scan that detected Caden’s life-threatening injury. With proper stabilization and early detection, we were able to get him to a pediatric surgeon who saved his life,” said Dr. Judhan.

He says Caden would not have survived if PMC had not made the quick determination of his injuries.

“I am grateful for the team at PMC for their quick determination of Caden’s injuries,” said Sparks. “The care they initially provided ultimately saved his life.”

“It is scary to think what could have happened if the hospital was not here to provide care that day,” added Sparks.

All three are doing well and have fully recovered from their injuries sustained that day.