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Understanding the Complications You Might Have from a Vaginal Mesh

Women face issues with their pelvic floor muscles for a variety of reasons. These are the muscles at the bottom of your pelvis that support the genitals, bladder, and rectum. Problems in this area lead to conditions like pelvic organ prolapse (POP) and stress incontinence.

Stress incontinence means you have issues controlling your bladder, and a prolapse in the pelvic area indicates the muscles in the vagina or anus are weak enough to drop or press out of the opening. 

A method of dealing with both conditions is a surgically placed device that supports the pelvic area called a vaginal mesh.

The vaginal mesh began to be used for stress incontinence in 1996 and for POP in 2002. And while variations of the mesh are still in use, there have been many cases of women experiencing complications as a result of vaginal mesh surgery.

If you’re in the Boston, Massachusetts, area and you’re experiencing complications from vaginal mesh surgery, help is available. With their experience in urogynecology and reconstructive pelvic surgery, Dr. Neeraj Kohli and BostonUrogyn can expertly address your needs.

What is vaginal mesh?

This is the term for a surgical mesh made in a variety of different materials that is used to support the pelvic floor muscles and related tissue or bone. 

This can be done in one of three ways: transvaginal and transabdominal mesh for treating POP, and a mesh sling that treats stress incontinence by supporting the urethra or bladder neck. 

As of 2019, all transvaginal mesh procedures have been halted due to the FDA removing the materials from the market over safety concerns. The other forms of mesh are still available, but women who’ve had vaginal mesh surgery should be aware of potential complications.

What are potential vaginal mesh complications?

Complications from vaginal mesh surgery include vaginal mesh erosion, the most common problem, where parts of the mesh start to protrude into the vagina. Protrusions may also happen in the bladder, rectum, and urethra.

Another potential complication is vaginal mesh contraction, where the mesh contracts over time, causing painful tightening or vaginal shortening. Painful intercourse, urinary problems, bleeding, and a POP relapse are also possible as a result of vaginal mesh surgery.

Experiencing one or more of these complications can also cause you emotional distress. If this describes your situation, consider giving Dr. Kohli a call today.

What can be done to repair the damage?

Erosion often requires surgery to correct. In some cases, multiple operations may be needed. In other cases, the exposed mesh is removed and vaginal cream is used to alleviate symptoms.

Dr. Kohli has years of experience performing this delicate procedure and uses methods like nerve blocks, pelvic floor physical therapy, and pain medications to help ease discomfort.

Dealing with stress incontinence, POP, or complications from vaginal mesh surgery can be difficult, but help is available and things can get better. Call one of our Boston area locations, including Wellesley and South Weymouth, Massachusetts, or book your appointment online.

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