Transvaginal surgical mesh (TVM) implants were once believed to be an innovation with great potential for many women suffering from conditions such as stress urinary incontinence (SUI) and pelvic organ prolapse (POP). However, since being introduced onto the market, the devices have been considered to be the source of additional health concerns due to transvaginal mesh implant complications for a large number of those provided this type of treatment. According to the FDA, the transvaginal placement of the surgical mesh may put women at a greater risk for POP mesh complications than other surgical options.
Surgical mesh transplants have been used for hernias and other disorders requiring surgical support. Transvaginal surgical mesh was intended to permanently repair stress urinary incontinence (SUI) and pelvic organ prolapse (POP). In 2010 alone, more than 75,000 women received a transvaginal mesh implant, however more than 10 percent of these surgeries resulted in failure. Similar results were seen in other years and unfortunately for many women, reports of complications came too late to prevent injury.
Transvaginal Mesh Lawsuits
Thousands of lawsuits have been filed by women and their families against medical device manufacturers of transvaginal mesh products. Over 40 thousand lawsuits have been filed in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of West Virginia alone, including six federal multidistrict litigations overseen by Chief Judge Joseph R. Goodwin. Though there are many manufacturers of transvaginal mesh devices, thus far companies named in current lawsuits include such notables as: American Medical Systems (AMS), a subsidiary of Endo, C.R. Bard, Cook Medical Inc., Boston Scientific, Coloplast Corp and Neomedic. Several women have received urogynologic procedures using surgical mesh to repair pelvic organ prolapse or to treat urinary incontinence.
Lawsuits have claimed that the manufacturers of transvaginal meshes failed to warn patients and doctors about this increased risk, women suffering mesh complications may be able to file a claim seeking compensation for medical bills, pain and suffering and other damages. Companies failed to conduct appropriate testing and research to determine risks of surgical mesh used for female pelvic disorders.
Complications & Side Effects of Transvaginal Mesh
Transvaginal mesh is a medical device that is used to repair tears in the connective tissue of the pelvis, causing the intestines, bladder or bowel to protrude into the vagina. Vaginal mesh, transvaginal tape, and transvaginal slings are used to stitch the connective tissue in the vaginal wall muscle back together. Unfortunately, thousands of women have been seriously injured when their implant eroded into their vagina, perforated organs, caused chronic pain, or required revision surgery.
In 2008, the FDA issued a public warning about the complications of transvaginal mesh but maintained that the complications were rare. This was later amended in 2011, when the FDA changed the warning to say that complications were NOT rare and that apparently transvaginal mesh procedures exposed patients to a higher risk of complications and were not more effective than other procedures. In addition, the agency claims that with the exposure to greater risk comes no indication of greater clinical benefit in women electing to undergo pelvic organ prolapse repair surgery transvaginally. Transvaginal mesh can come with serious side effects like Bowel, bladder and blood vessel perforation, Urinary problems, Discomfort, Vaginal scarring, Vaginal mesh erosion (exposure of patch after surgery), Infection, Bleeding and Pain during intercourse.
Plaintiffs’ lawyers around the country have filed lawsuits against vaginal mesh manufacturers largely on behalf of women who have already had or will have to undergo surgeries to remove mesh from their pelvic tissue and to treat complications from defects in these mesh products. Damages obtained in a transvaginal mesh lawsuit may include past and future medical treatment expenses (including repair surgeries), lost earnings, loss of earning capacity, pain and suffering, and other related damages.