Organ perforation is one of the most severe complications of vaginal mesh, and it can be life-threatening. The bladder is the most commonly perforated organ, but vaginal mesh can also perforate the intestines, vagina, blood vessels, and more. Unfortunately, even with multiple corrective surgeries, some side effects may be permanent. These debilitating complications may include scarring, disfigurement of the vagina, nerve damage and more. Many women suffer permanently decreased quality of life due to vaginal mesh organ perforation.
What You Can Do & How a Vaginal Mesh Lawsuit Can Help
The Schmidt Firm, PLLC is currently accepting vaginal mesh induced injury cases in all 50 states. If you or somebody you know has been injured by vaginal mesh organ perforation, you should contact our lawyers immediately for a free case consultation. Please use the form below to contact our Vaginal Mesh Litigation Group or call us toll-free 24 hours a day at (866) 920-0753.
What is Vaginal Mesh?
Vaginal mesh is a medical device that is used to treat Stress Urinary Incontinence (SUI) and Pelvic Organ Prolapse (POP), two conditions that occur when weakened pelvic muscles allow abdominal organs to drop into the vagina and/or rectum. Vaginal mesh is a hammock-like implant that is designed to treat POP and SUI by supporting weakened pelvic muscles.
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has published two major safety warnings — one in 2008 and an update in 2011 — warning that serious vaginal mesh complications are “not rare.” However, because the FDA approved most vaginal meshes without requiring safety studies (and based on a product that was already recalled for safety concerns), there is not much information on how often side effects occur.
Although vaginal mesh has been linked to severe side effects, there is no evidence that it is a more effective treatment for POP and SUI than traditional surgical methods.
Vaginal Mesh Organ Perforation
Organ perforation is one of the most serious adverse events caused by vaginal mesh. Organ perforation can occur in two ways: 1) during the initial surgery to implant vaginal mesh inside the body, or 2) over time, as the mesh erodes into nearby tissues. Either way, it is one of the most serious complications.
The bladder is the most commonly-perforated organ, because of its proximity to the vagina and its delicate membrane. The urethra may also be perforated.
Vaginal mesh can perforate one or more of the following organs:
- Blood vessels
Symptoms of Organ Perforation
The symptoms of organ perforation are most serious when the perforated organ leaks bacteria into the body, causing sepsis or severe infection. Symptoms of organ perforation may include:
- Abdominal pain
- Abnormal bleeding in the urine or stools
- Pain during sexual intercourse
- Symptoms of shock and/or sepsis
- Confusion, delirium
- Fever, low body temperature
- Low blood pressure
- Skin rash
- Warm skin
- Loss of consciousness
Vaginal mesh organ perforation can be deadly. When vaginal mesh perforates an internal organ, revision surgery is often necessary to correct the problem.
The type of treatment depends on the size and nature of the perforation, with many variations. An intestinal perforation, for example, could cause body waste to leak into the abdominal cavity. This could cause sepsis — in which bacteria infect the bloodstream and set off a systemic inflammatory response. Blood pressure drops, the patient goes into shock, and major organ systems (including the heart, brain, and lungs) stop functioning due to lack of blood and oxygen.
Perforation of the urinary tract could cause severe incontinence problems. Usually, treatment involves the insertion of a catheter which drains the bladder for several days or weeks. The bladder will usually heal within a few weeks.
Perforation of a blood vessel could cause a hemorrhage into the abdominal cavity, and the formation of a hematoma (a coagulation of blood outside a blood vessel). The severity obviously depends on the size of the hematoma. If it is very large, increased pressure and swelling may cause serious damage in the abdominal cavity.
Other Vaginal Mesh Side Effects
In addition to organ perforation, vaginal mesh has been linked to the following severe side effects:
- Vaginal mesh erosion
- Shrinkage of vaginal mesh
- Recurrent organ prolapse or incontinence
- Nerve damage
- Disfigurement of the vagina
- Pelvic pain
- Pain during sexual intercourse
- Need for additional surgery
Many women who suffer these side effects require additional corrective surgery. However, even with many surgeries, some complications may be permanent — including scarring, nerve damage, disfigurement, and more. Many women suffer permanently decreased quality of life due to vaginal mesh.
Do I have a Vaginal Mesh Lawsuit?
The Schmidt Firm, PLLC is currently accepting Vaginal Mesh induced injury cases in all 50 states. If you or somebody you know has been injured by vaginal mesh, you should contact our lawyers immediately for a free case consultation. Please use the form below to contact our Vaginal Mesh Litigation Group or call toll free 24 hours a day at (866) 920-0753.
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