Stress urinary incontinence (SUI) is an embarrassing condition for many people, one that is often treated using surgical mesh. Transvaginal mesh (TVM) is an implanted device for women that returns organs to their appropriate positions and alleviates SUI symptoms. When working properly, TVM allows women to perform daily activities without incontinence underwear or frequent trips to the restroom. Unfortunately, TVM is not a perfect solution: This device has also been linked to adverse vaginal mesh complications worse than the symptoms many women were trying to alleviate.
Stories From Women with Vaginal Mesh Complications
Shari Davis decided to share her negative experiences with vaginal mesh complications. In 2003, Davis was diagnosed with a weakened pelvic floor and had TVM implanted. According to MedicalExposure, Davis’s condition improved for a period of time before her incontinence and pain returned. If this wasn’t frustrating enough, Davis’s personal relationship was also affected when her husband’s penis was cut during intercourse because of a TVM complication. Davis felt extreme guilt after this incident even though it wasn’t her fault.
Another woman from West Virginia named Beverly (her last name remains anonymous) experienced severe vaginal pain after implantation, making intercourse extremely painful. The mesh didn’t solve her incontinence, either, making matters worse. When Beverly finally saw a doctor, her OB/GYN told her something protruded from the right side of her vagina—commonly referred to as device erosion. However, it wasn’t until several years of pain and frustration later that Beverly finally had the device surgically removed.
How Vaginal Mesh Complications Affect Daily Life
Device erosion and pain are not the only vaginal mesh complications women suffer. Infection, organ prolapse recurrence, organ perforation, and scarring are also associated with TVM.
All of these issues can affect a woman’s day-to-day life and relationships. Vaginal mesh complications can also hamper regular connections by causing debilitating embarrassment as women struggle to control bowel movements.
Over 50,000 federal lawsuits have been filed against pelvic mesh product manufacturers. The allegations brought against these companies cover device complications, insufficient testing, and poor research.
What You Can Do
Many women have TVM implanted because the method is cheaper than abdominal surgery, and there is a shorter recovery time. However, alternative treatment options seem a lot more appealing when patients consider the potential emotional impact of the vaginal mesh device. In addition, the extra surgeries required to have the device removed can result in even more medical bills than the initial abdominal surgery would have required.
If you or a loved one experienced adverse side effects due to TVM, you may qualify for compensation. Consider talking to an attorney about pursuing a transvaginal mesh lawsuit.
Lori Polemenakos is Director of Consumer Content and SEO strategist for LeadingResponse, a legal marketing company. An award-winning journalist, writer and editor based in Dallas, Texas, she's produced articles for major brands such as Match.com, Yahoo!, MSN, AOL, Xfinity, Mail.com, and edited several published books. Since 2016, she's published hundreds of articles about Social Security disability, workers' compensation, veterans' benefits, personal injury, mass tort, auto accident claims, bankruptcy, employment law and other related legal issues.