Bladder Sling Lawyers

by Steve Fields on December 1st, 2011

Millions of women suffer from a condition called pelvic organ prolapse (POP). If you have suffered from complications after surgery, please contact us for a free consultation from one of our bladder sling lawyers. Due to a weakening of the muscles and ligaments supporting the uterus, bladder, rectum, and small intestine, one or more of these organs can drop into the vagina. Depending on the affected organs, a woman may experience vaginal pain, sexual problems, and difficulties with urinary and bowel function. Surgical mesh can be installed through the vagina to lend support for the prolapsed organs. Unfortunately, thousands of women have suffered serious vaginal mesh complications following the surgery.

The Food and Drug Administration reported in July 2011 that it had received thousands of reports regarding bladder sling mesh failures. Thus far, there has been no U.S. bladder sling recall or class action lawsuit filed to represent injured women currently suffering pain and other side effects. However, hundreds of cases have been filed individually. Below, we’ll describe many of the complications for which women are seeking compensation from the surgical mesh manufacturers.

Common Transvaginal Mesh Failure Side Effects

Side effects vary depending on the circumstances surrounding the failure of mesh. The FDA noted that the most common complication reported involved erosion of the device through the vaginal wall (called vaginal extrusion). The mesh, after it is installed, slowly moves through the vaginal tissue, and becomes observable above the vaginal skin. This can cause pain during sexual intercourse (dyspareunia), bleeding, and possible infection.

The conventional approach to addressing mesh erosion is to remove the product from the body. But as the FDA noted in their July 2011 safety communication, this is not always possible. In fact, multiple procedures may be performed for this purpose, and fail to resolve the problem.

Sometimes, the protruding portion of the bladder sling (i.e. the piece that has eroded through the vaginal skin) can be surgically excised. But this alone will not prevent the remaining portion of mesh from eroding through the wall. Thus, subsequent surgeries may become necessary down the road.

It is also possible for surgical mesh implanted vaginally to erode into the wall of the bladder. This is a rare complication that, in some ways, is more serious than vaginal erosion. Side effects include bladder pain, urinary tract infections, and pain during urination. Mesh erosion into the bladder can also produce urine drainage as well as blood in the urine. The bladder sling must be removed from the tissue of the bladder, a complex procedure that requires extensive knowledge of that portion of the anatomy.

Many women have also reported severe abdominal or vaginal pain that occurs during their normal daily routine. This can present when the defective pelvic mesh pulls, or otherwise irritates, the nerves in the abdomen. In most cases, the entire device must be extracted from the body.

Another pelvic mesh complication involves urinary outflow. The device may settle in a way that blocks the path of urine when it leaves the bladder. A partial obstruction will reduce the amount of urine that is able to exit the body. A complete obstruction will prevent urination altogether. Surgical intervention is necessary to reposition or remove the bladder sling.

Possible Consequences Of Pelvic Mesh Complications

The side effects described earlier can lower the patient’s quality of life. For example, some women have been forced to abandon their workout routines; others are unable to be as active as they would like with their children and grandchildren; and still other women have found sexual intercourse to cause severe pain. Many have foregone sex with their spouses due to the discomfort.

Some transvaginal mesh side effects can be resolved or controlled. For example, recurring vaginal infections can be managed with antibiotics. Other complications, such as erosion, are often more difficult to correct. As already noted, the device may prove difficult, or even impossible, to remove. Many women are forced to endure permanent pain or discomfort.

To date, there have been over 500 bladder sling lawsuits filed, most of which target two particular manufacturers: Ethicon (a Johnson & Johnson subsidiary) and C.R. Bard Inc. Evidence suggests other companies have developed defective mesh products, as well.

If you received a vaginal mesh implant and have suffered any of the complications described earlier, you may be eligible to file a claim for compensation. Contact our bladder sling lawyers to discuss your case. There is a limited time for filing a vaginal mesh lawsuit. Please contact us at your earliest convenience.

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