By now, you’ve probably seen commercials on television warning about the dangers of something called “transvaginal mesh.” And, if you’re anything like the thousands of Americans who entered the question into their Google search bars this past year, you’ve probably wondered to yourself, “What is transvaginal mesh?” Well, wonder no more. The following blog is dedicated to answering all your transvaginal mesh questions, as well as to clearing up some common misconceptions about the dangerous medical device. We’ve also provided a link for you to get in contact with our knowledgeable and experienced product liabilities attorneys, in case you have suffered any transvaginal mesh complications yourself.
“What is Transvaginal Mesh (TVM)?”
According to the Medline Plus Medical dictionary, the word “transvaginal” refers to something “passing through or performed by the vagina.” According to the same source, the word “mesh” refers to “a flexible netting of fine wire used in surgery especially in repair of large hernias and other body defects.” Transvaginal mesh, then, is a surgical fabric inserted through the vagina during pelvic surgery. It’s job is to act as a bladder sling or pelvic sling in the event of Pelvic Organ Prolapse or Stress Urinary Incontinence (see directly below).
“What is Transvaginal Mesh used for?”
Transvaginal mesh is primarily used to treat two conditions (and it’s worth noting that these two conditions are not at all uncommon in women). They are:
(1) Pelvic Organ Prolapse, which occurs when the tissue designed to hold the pelvic organs–such as the bladder, uterus, small bowel and rectum–becomes weakened and no longer able to support those organs. When this happens, the pelvic organs become in danger of dropping, or prolapsing, into the vagina and, in some cases, past the vaginal opening. The implanted transvaginal mesh is supposed to support the pelvic organs when the natural tissue can no longer bear the burden.
(2) Stress Urinary Incontinence, which refers to the involuntary leakage of urine during physical exertions, such as exercise, laughing or crying. In cases of SUI, the implanted transvaginal mesh is supposed to prevent urinary leakage.
“Why is Transvaginal Mesh dangerous?”
In July 2011, the FDA issued a warning about the many adverse events reported by patients implanted with transvaginal mesh devices. Patients filed frequent complaints about mesh erosion through the vagina (also referred to as exposure, extrusion or protrusion), pain, infection, bleeding, pain during sexual intercourse, organ perforation and urinary problems. In addition, complaints regarding recurrent prolapse, neuro-muscular problems, vaginal scarring/shrinkage and emotional problems were also reported. Many of these side effects require further, and more invasive, surgical procedures than the original one involving the mesh implant. These procedures can be costly, emotionally draining and physically painful. If you or a loved one has experienced any adverse side effects from a transvaginal mesh implant, you may be entitled to a recovery for your damages. To find out if you are eligible to file a claim against the medical device manufacturer, contact the respected transvaginal mesh attorneys at Breslin and Breslin for a free, no-risk case evaluation today. You can do so either online, or by calling 201-546-5881.