Every year, doctors across the U.S. perform more than a million hernia repair surgeries. And since the 1990s, the use of a surgical mesh to strengthen a repair and prevent the hernia from recurring has become the standard of care.
Unfortunately, while use of a hernia mesh may have benefits, it also has the potential to result in complications, severe injury, or even death. According to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA), hernia meshes have been associated with:
- Chronic – and in some cases severe – pain, due to nerves becoming trapped in the mesh, erosion, or inflammation of tissues surrounding the mesh;
- Recurrence of the hernia, caused by the mesh becoming more rigid over time and eventually breaking under pressure;
- Mesh movement, which occurs when the mesh becomes loose and migrates through the groin or abdominal cavity;
- Mesh shrinkage, which happens when scar tissue surrounding the mesh shrinks, causing the mesh to shrink as well, creating a hard mass which pinches the nerves embedded in it.
Hernia meshes have also been connected to nerve damage and damage to the intestinal walls – both complications which may require additional surgeries to correct. Complicating this situation further is the fact that when a hernia does recur, the odds of subsequent surgeries to repair the hernia being successful are greatly reduced.
Mesh Recalls Have Become Common
Beyond the risks inherent in any surgery, surgical mesh complications have led to numerous recalls by medical device manufacturers and the FDA. The following mesh products are among the most prominent recalls since 2005:
- Ethicon Physiomesh Flexible Composite Mesh, recalled in 2016 due to higher-than-average rates of recurrence after abdominal hernia repair;
- Ethicon Proceed Surgical mesh, recalled in 2010 due to the potential for layers of the mesh to separate, causing significant loss of toughness;
- Composix Kugel mesh products produced by R. Bard and Davol, recalled beginning in 2005 due to the potential for a memory recoil ring to break, leading to bowel perforation.
What to Do If You Suspect Hernia Mesh Complications
If you suspect you or a loved one are suffering from complications caused by the use of a hernia mesh in surgery, please contact our experienced hernia mesh attorneys today. All consultations are free and you pay nothing unless we win. Call 800-794-0444 today.