When it comes to pelvic floor disorders, there are a variety of treatments available, from biofeedback to drugs to surgical intervention. Many women choose a surgical procedure involving the placement of a surgical mesh into the weakened area. While many women report complete satisfaction with the procedure, others have experienced serious transvaginal mesh injuries.
Our medical malpractice attorneys are well-versed in transvaginal mesh injuries and can work with you to obtain compensation for injuries resulting from surgeries to repair pelvic floor disorders.
What is Transvaginal Mesh?
Transvaginal mesh refers to a flexible mesh patch that is placed along the wall of the vaginal canal to address issues related pelvic organ prolapse and stress urinary incontinence. Depending on the issue complained of, the mesh is placed in different locations to offer support. Common names for transvaginal mesh include vaginal mesh, bladder mesh or pelvic sling.
Safety Concerns Related to Transvaginal Mesh
The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has classified transvaginal use of surgical mesh to repair pelvic organ prolapse to be a high-risk one due to reported complications. These complications include:
- chronic pain
- painful intercourse
- urinary problems
- mesh erosion
- organ perforation
- vaginal scarring
- recurrence of original complaint
Women faced with such complications usually require additional surgeries to repair the damage.
Treatment of stress urinary incontinence with surgical mesh can also cause these types of complications, but they are less frequent and seldom require additional surgeries.
How Common are Transvaginal Mesh Injuries?
According to the UCLA School of Medicine, pelvic organ prolapse is one of the most common complaints that lead women to surgery. In fact, around 200,000 women undergo surgery to repair the pelvic floor each year. Surprisingly, about 13% of women end up needing a repeat operation. Additionally, 30% of women endure more surgeries for prolapse or related conditions.
How are Transvaginal Mesh Injuries Diagnosed and Treated?
If a transvaginal mesh injury is suspected, a patient will likely undergo one or more of the following tests:
- local ultrasound
- stool tests
- urine tests
- blood tests
Once a positive diagnosis of a transvaginal mesh injury is made, surgery is often the only way to alleviate the symptoms. Surgery involves removing all or part of the mesh. If you can imagine the structure of a chain link fence, you can likely get a feel for how a surgeon must untangle soft tissues from those links. Complications are common. Additionally, the original problems of urinary incontinence or organ prolapse return. Many women report feeling worse after the surgery than they did before.
The adverse effects of transvaginal mesh surgery can be extensive and last a lifetime, impacting a woman’s ability to work, engage in recreational activities and enjoy their families. If it is determined that these injuries were caused by medical malpractice or a defective mesh, it is possible to seek monetary compensation for your injuries, pain and suffering. We can help. Schedule a consultation with our New Jersey medical malpractice attorneys today.