Many women who suffer from pelvic organ prolapse or urinary incontinence once opted for treatment with the mesh sling, also called transvaginal mesh. This device is a small, flexible mesh screen that is usually implanted through the vagina in order to provide support for the muscles of the pelvis. Unfortunately, the device has proven to erode and cause pain, infection, bleeding, fistula, organ perforation and urinary problems.
Treating the complications of a mesh sling will begin by addressing removal of the device and be completed with a plan customized for your symptoms. Repairing the damage caused by transvaginal mesh may be able to be achieved conservatively with estrogen creams or trimming exposed mesh. Moderate complications may be treated with external removal using local anesthetic. Complex removal surgery may be necessary for devices that are interlaced with tissue, nerves and blood vessels. Since the mesh sling was not designed to be removed, transvaginal mesh revision procedures require the most advanced and technically trained urogynecological specialists.
Women who seek specialist help for mesh complications often have abdominal, back and pelvic pain, pain with sitting, pain with sex or inability to have intercourse. These symptoms are caused by the erosion and extrusion, where the tissues around the device may begin to erode and the device may begin to protrude through vaginal tissue. The goal of transvaginal mesh revision is to remove the pieces of the mesh sling that are causing these problems without further damaging the surrounding tissues. Following the removal of the device, a pelvic reconstruction procedure may be performed to repair the original problems that originally compelled the need for the mesh device.