No one takes surgery lightly. When you have an operation, you have a reasonable expectation that your medical issue will be resolved. However, when the tools and devices used in surgery fail, patients can suffer.
One dangerous medical device with a high risk of complications is the surgical mesh used in hernia repair surgery. Those complications can result in the need for revision or replacement surgery, and patients who experienced such complications have legal recourse.
What makes a hernia mesh potentially dangerous?
A hernia forms when part of an internal organ or a piece of fatty tissue squeezes through a hole or weak spot in the muscle or connective tissue that surrounds it. Hernias can be repaired surgically, but unless the hole that the hernia squeezed through in the first place is fixed, there is nothing stopping another hernia from occurring in the same spot. A hernia mesh is a medical device, typically made of knitted synthetic materials, that is implanted into the body surgically in order to reinforce the weak spots to prevent the hernia from recurring.
Hernia mesh was first used in the 1980s and has grown in popularity since then. Today, the vast majority of hernia repair surgeries involve the use of mesh.
The purpose of surgical mesh is to prevent future medical issues. Due to manufacturing and design defects, however, certain types of mesh can result in complications. In particular, there have been reported instances of the mesh detaching from the site of the surgery and migrating elsewhere in the body, causing injury. The mesh can also shrink or cause adhesion. That is the development of scar tissue inside the body that can lead to cascading complications like bowel obstruction.
Symptoms caused by a defective hernia mesh
Defective mesh can fail to do its job, causing hernia recurrence. When that happens, additional surgery is usually needed to both repair the new hernia and repair or replace the defective mesh. Some other side effects associated with dangerous hernia mesh products include:
- Bowel perforation or obstruction
- Chronic pain
- Painful urination
- Bloating, vomiting and other digestive issues
Some types of complications from defective hernia mesh, such as mesh migration, can occur years after the initial hernia surgery. When those complications are detected, you may need revision surgery to repair or replace the mesh, as well as potentially other medical treatment.
Hernia mesh manufacturers
The primary manufacturers of dangerous mesh products are:
Each of these manufacturers has had numerous mesh products on the market. Some have been recalled due to an elevated risk of complications. Again, the onset of symptoms can be delayed for quite some time after the surgery. So, if you've ever had surgery to repair a hernia and are now noticing any of the symptoms listed above, you should see your doctor, and if you've had or will need to have a second surgery, you should talk to an experienced attorney. We can fight to hold the manufacturer accountable. We will work hard to get you fair compensation for the cost of revision surgery and other costs related to the defective medical device.
Dean Waite & Associates, LLC is currently reviewing cases for hernia mesh patients throughout Alabama who needed revision or replacement surgery, including people who were implanted with the Ethicon Physiomesh, Atrium C-QUR Mesh, and many other hernia mesh products. We'd be glad to speak with you about your legal rights and options in a free consultation. Contact our law office today.