In Scotland, women on waiting lists and involved in a medical study continue to receive transvaginal mesh implants.
A Scottish news outlet, The Southern Reporter, investigated transvaginal mesh procedures at a hospital near Melrose, Scotland. Reporters discovered that Borders General Hospital (BGH) continued to perform transvaginal mesh surgeries for patients on waiting lists or in a medical study.
Negative outcomes of surgery
The Scottish news outlet reviewed the 2013 operations, and discovered a high percentage of negative outcomes.
In 2013, Borders General Hospital performed 113 operations. Of those…
- 3% of patients had their vaginal mesh implant fail
- 8% of patients had trouble urinating
- 10% experienced mesh exposure
- 5% suffered severe leg and/or groin pain
- 2% contracted a urinary tract infection (UTI)
Borders General Hospital told The Southern Reporter that women who opt into mesh procedures now receive up-to-date information about known risks. And because the hospital limits procedures to certain patients and now supplies adequate warning, the hospital argued that it is in compliance.
Vaginal mesh procedures declining
Though the Scottish hospital continues to perform mesh procedures, they are decreasing over time.
The Southern Reporter found that in 2011, the hospital performed 151 operations. In 2014, the hospital performed only 16 operations.
A call to stop vaginal mesh surgery
In 2014, the former Scottish health secretary, Alex Neil, requested that healthcare providers stop performing mesh procedures to treat stress urinary incontinence (SUI) and pelvic organ prolapse (POP).
Scottish government publishes report
In October 2015, the Scottish government published an interim report on transvaginal mesh surgeries. The report stated that healthcare providers must receive the most current information on vaginal mesh complications, so that they are equipped to advise patients.
The interim report also noted that vaginal mesh complications can be so severe that they can permanently impact a woman’s life.
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