How Do I Know If My Hernia Mesh Has Failed?
If you have undergone hernia surgery in the past, there is a good chance that surgical mesh was implanted into your body during the procedure. The use of hernia mesh can help to strengthen the impacted area and reduce the risk of the injury returning in the future. When hernia mesh fails, however, the results can be devastating.
Symptoms of Hernia Mesh Failure
If your hernia mesh falls apart or otherwise fails, you will likely experience some of the following symptoms:
- Bloody urine
- Swelling around the surgical site
- Fevers and chills
- Abdominal pain
It is important to note that hernia mesh failure can happen at any time. Even if it has been months or years since your surgery, there is still a chance that your mesh can fall apart.
If you have surgical mesh in your body and notice yourself suffering from any of the symptoms listed above, it is a good idea to speak with your doctor as quickly as possible. They will be able to perform imaging tests and x-rays to determine if your mesh is failing.
Complications Caused by Hernia Mesh
If you have hernia mesh implanted in your body, there is a chance that you will suffer from one or more of the following complications:
Broken hernia mesh can lead your body to form bands of dangerous scar tissue. In severe cases, these adhesions can cause your organs to fuse together and stop functioning properly.
Bowel Obstructions and Perforations
Hernia mesh failure has the potential to leave scar tissue in your intestines, making it difficult or even impossible to pass stool. If the obstruction is not treated, the bowel can eventually become perforated.
If your hernia mesh falls apart, it may cause an infection around the surgical site. While this issue can often be treated with antibiotics, you may need to have the mesh surgically removed to fully resolve the problem.
Approximately 11% of hernia mesh patients suffer from chronic pain after their surgery. If your post-surgery pain never seems to go away, you should speak to your doctor to see if mesh failure may be to blame.
Hernia Mesh Recalls
According to the US Food and Drug Administration, many hernia mesh complications are caused by products that have since been recalled by the manufacturers. Some of the most noteworthy recalls of defective hernia mesh products include:
Between 2005 and 2007, CR Bard was forced to issue a recall and cease all sales of their Kugel Mesh product. The action was ordered by the FDA due to links between the implant and bowel tearing in patients.
Atrium Medical Corporation issued a recall for their C-Qur mesh implant in 2012. This recall was made necessary by a packaging issue which made the product unsuitable for its purpose.
In 2016, Ethicon’s Physiomesh product was recalled because it was made of a composite plastic material called polypropylene. This substance can lead to serious complications when inserted into the human body. Patients reported infections and perforated organs among other issues.
Steps to Take if Your Hernia Mesh Fails
Without question, the first step that you should take if you believe that your hernia mesh may have failed is to speak with your doctor. They will put you through the necessary tests to determine if your mesh has indeed fallen apart. If so, they will then work with you to figure out a treatment plan.
The exact nature of your treatment plan will depend on how your mesh has failed and what complications it has caused. In general, however, you can expect hernia mesh treatment to include one or more of the following:
- Mesh removal surgery
- Bowel removal surgery
Once you have addressed your immediate medical needs, you can then consider filing a lawsuit against the manufacturer of your hernia mesh. An experienced personal injury and product liability attorney will be able to tell you whether you have a valid case, how long the case will take, and how large your financial settlement is likely to be. Generally speaking, you are likely to be able to seek compensation for the following costs:
- Medical bills
- Lost wages
- Pain and suffering
- Loss of enjoyment of life
It is usually a good idea to speak with an attorney about your case fairly soon after your hernia mesh failure has been diagnosed. Doing so will prevent any statutes of limitation from expiring before you are able to claim the financial compensation that you deserve.