Vaginal Mesh Lawsuit
Hundreds of thousands of women could potentially experience severe post-surgical transvaginal mesh complications. Please contact us for the latest vaginal mesh lawsuit news if you have suffered side effects following surgery. Surgical mesh is installed through the vaginal wall to repair pelvic organ prolapse (POP) and stress urinary incontinence (SUI). Unfortunately, many women who have undergone the procedure have developed vaginal pain, bleeding, recurring infections, and other problems. The most common complication reported to the FDA is erosion, a circumstance in which the mesh starts to migrate through the body’s tissue.
The FDA issued a warning in 2011 to caution women considering vaginal mesh surgery for POP and SUI repair. The procedure was associated with substantial risk. Since then, hundreds of women have filed surgical mesh lawsuit claims against the manufacturers of the mesh devices found to be problematic.
Below, we’ll describe the effects of mesh erosion as the device moves through the vaginal wall. You’ll also learn about less common, but arguably more serious, types of erosion.
Side Effects Of Vaginal Mesh Erosion
Many of the pelvic mesh complications reported by the FDA in 2011 stem from vaginal erosion. As the device migrates through the wall of the vagina, it causes severe pain and bleeding. The patient may also develop infections of the vaginal mucosa as well as the urinary tract.
It is possible for the pelvic mesh to move so far through the vaginal tissue that a portion of it appears in the vaginal canal. In addition to causing pain for the woman during sex, it may also cause pain for her sexual partner.
In July 2011, the FDA published a report titled “Urogynecologic Surgical Mesh: Update on the Safety and Effectiveness of Transvaginal Placement for Pelvic Organ Prolapse.” In this report, it noted that data from studies examining nearly 12,000 women showed that approximately 10 percent of them experienced mesh erosion after vaginal placement of the device. Moreover, it was found that the problem typically occurred within the first year of surgery.
In the past, the FDA has strongly encouraged companies to withdraw their medical devices after posting failure rates that were lower than 10 percent. Despite this, there are no surgical mesh recalls currently pending.
Mesh Erosion Into The Bladder And Rectum
On occasion, the surgical mesh will erode into the prolapsed organ. For example, if the patient undergoes surgery to repair a cystocele (prolapsed bladder), the device may migrate into the tissue of the bladder. This can cause additional urinary tract infections, blood in the urine, and even the development of a fistula between the bladder and vagina. A fistula will allow the drainage of urine into the vagina.
If the patient undergoes transvaginal mesh surgery for a rectocele (prolapsed rectum), the device may erode into the wall of the rectum. In addition to causing rectal bleeding and pain, it might also cause a fistula to form. Here, a fistula will allow stool to drain from the rectum into the vagina, causing serious infection.
Surgical Intervention To Correct Transvaginal Mesh Erosion
If the pelvic mesh erodes through the vaginal tissue, or into the bladder or rectum, the device needs to be removed. With vaginal erosion, removal and repair of the tissue may be possible transvaginally. With bladder or rectal erosion, removal and repair is performed through abdominal incisions.
The FDA noted in its 2011 safety warning that some incidents of mesh erosion required multiple surgeries to correct. There were also cases reported by women in which the device could not be removed from the vaginal tissue. The surgeon is usually forced to remove a portion of the mesh, typically the piece that has protruded into the vaginal canal. The remaining part of the device can be expected to continue working its way through the tissue, causing infection and eventually requiring subsequent surgeries.
Nearly 75,000 women underwent transvaginal placement of mesh for POP repair in 2010. Over 200,000 women did so for SUI repair in the same year. These women expected to be relieved of their symptoms, and instead were burdened with one or more serious vaginal mesh complications.
If you received a mesh implant and have suffered erosion of the device or other problems, you may be eligible to file a claim for compensation. Contact a vaginal mesh lawsuit settlements attorney to discuss your legal options and for the latest surgery mesh recall updates.