What you need to know about transvaginal mesh

In November, we published a blog about the potential complications associated with the use of transvaginal mesh in surgeries and how a product liability lawyer can help injury victims. Today, we’ll look more closely at this subject to understand what transvaginal mesh is, the complications it can cause, and how Will Davidson LLP may be able to help.

  1. What is transvaginal mesh, and why is it used?

Transvaginal mesh is a flexible, net-like material, usually made from polypropylene. It is inserted through an incision made from inside the vagina. It is used with the intention of providing support for weakened vaginal tissues, which cause women to experience either pelvic organ prolapse or stress urinary incontinence.


  1. Is there a difference between transvaginal and traditional surgical mesh?

Surgical mesh is usually a loose sheet of mesh that is intended be used to support tissue and other organs around the body. Transvaginal mesh is distinctive in that it is implanted through the vagina only, with the specific intention of supporting the delicate pelvic organs, including uterus or bladder.


  1. How do I know what type of transvaginal mesh my doctor used on me?

There are many different types of transvaginal mesh, and to determine what type you received, you will need a copy of the manufacturer’s product sticker, which is usually found on the Operative Report. You can request a copy of your Operative Report from the hospital where you had your surgery.


  1. What are the potential risks and reported complications of transvaginal mesh?

There have been multiple reported complications and risks associated with transvaginal mesh, including but not limited to: mesh migration and erosion, perforation of nearby organs, infections, and pain. Many women who are suffering from complications from transvaginal mesh are also unable to have intercourse.


  1. Has transvaginal mesh been recalled?

To date, there have been no recalls on transvaginal mesh products from Health Canada. There have however, been a handful of voluntarily recalls by mesh manufacturers.


  1. I have suffered injuries caused by transvaginal mesh. What are my legal options?

Your legal options will depend on what specific transvaginal mesh device you received. You may be eligible to join a class action or initiate an individual action against the manufacturers of your transvaginal mesh product. In either situation, you should contact a personal injury or product liability lawyer as soon as possible.


  1. How many transvaginal mesh lawsuits have been issued in Canada?

There has been hundreds of individual actions commenced against the manufacturers of transvaginal mesh, and thousands of women have joined various class actions across Canada.


  1. How do I know whether I should join a class action or file an individual action?

There are various factors to determine whether a person is better suited for an individual action or a class action. Contact a product liability lawyer at Will Davidson LLP for a free consultation to discuss your specific case.

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