Header graphic for print
Dangerous Drugs & Medical Devices News & Commentary on Prescription Drug & Medical Device Lawsuits

Silicone Transvaginal Mesh “Major Complication” Rate Over 20%

Posted in Vaginal Mesh

A recent publication by medical researchers Fred E. Govier et al. in the journal Adult Urology has revealed a shockingly high rate of complication when using transvaginal mesh, a synthetic tissue product used in vaginal reconstructive surgery and other procedures.

The piece, titled “High Complication Rate Identified in Sacrocolpopexy Patients Attributed to Silicone Mesh” analyzed “the data of 45 consecutive patients who underwent abdominal (n=28) or laparoscopic (n=17) sacrocolpopexy.”[1]  Sacrocolpopexy is the technical term for pelvic prolapse repair, which constitutes the repair of the wall separating the pelvic organs from the rest of the body.  Abdominal sacrocolpopexy involves an incision into the abdomen, while laparoscopic sacrocolpopexy is less invasive and involves the insertion of a tiny camera aboard surgical equipment for enhanced visualization of the procedure.

“Of the 45 patients, 21 underwent silicone mesh suspension of the vaginal cuff to the anterior sacrum, with a mean follow-up of 23 months (range 16 to 41). A comparative analysis was performed of 24 patients who underwent the same procedure with polypropylene mesh.”[2]  Of the 21 patients who used silicone mesh as opposed to polypropylene mesh, 5 (23.8%)[3] encountered a “major complication.”[4]

Concluding, Govier et al. state “Silicone-coated polyester mesh has recently been associated with a high rate of vaginal erosion when used as a transvaginal suburethral sling. Our experience specifically with vaginal vault suspension corroborates this. We have abandoned the use of silicone mesh because of the unacceptably high extrusion rate and presently use polypropylene mesh.” (emphasis added)

While this paper only uses a relatively small sample size, it appears to conclude that polypropylene mesh is safe – and it is, when compared to silicone mesh – but other contemporary research has proven that the complication rate for polypropylene mesh is also exceedingly high, reaching levels of over 10%, a number confirmed by studies using thousands of participants.

One such study showing the mesh erosion rate for a variety of transvaginal mesh products is summarized here.

Due to the fact that the manufacturers of transvaginal mesh products have been insufficiently forthcoming about the risks associated with the use of their products, many transvaginal mesh lawsuits are currently being filed.  If you used a transvaginal mesh product and experienced transvaginal mesh erosion or another transvaginal mesh side effect and were unaware of the risks prior to using the product, please do not hesitate to contact our team of transvaginal mesh lawyers as you may be eligible to file a transvaginal mesh lawsuit.

For a free case consultation, you may at your convenience contact our offices by phone at (855) 452-5529 or by e-mail at justinian@dangerousdrug.us.  Our Transvaginal Mesh Lawsuit Information page is a great place to start if you have additional questions about Transvaginal Mesh.


[1] Govier, FE et al. “High Complication Rate Identified in Sacrocolpopexy Patients Attributed to Silicone Mesh” Adult Urology 65:1099-1103, 2005

[2] Ibid.

[3] Ibid.

[4] Ibid.