Symptoms of hernia mesh failure may include pain, swelling, rash, bowel obstruction, erectile dysfunction, fistulas, infection, bleeding, or the recurrence of the hernia.
Hernia mesh is a common medical tool used to support or cover an opening in a weak muscle or connective tissue called fascia. A hernia happens when an organ, such as the intestines, or fatty tissue pushes through this soft fascia.
Unfortunately, no surgery is completely free of risks. However, when a tool such as a hernia mesh starts to fall apart or cause complications, the risk associated with the surgery becomes exponentially greater. In addition, complications can have lasting consequences.
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has been notified of many hernia mesh issues associated with mesh that has been recalled and is no longer available on the market. Many reports of complications have been associated directly with these recalled hernia mesh devices.
Continue reading to learn more about hernia mesh failure.
Common Types of Hernia Mesh
Hernia mesh is meant to provide additional support to weakened or damaged tissue. The most common types of hernia mesh surgical devices are:
Synthetic Mesh Material
Synthetic mesh is either knitted mesh or non-knitted sheet mesh. The other available options are absorbable, non-absorbable, and a combination of the two. The non-absorbable mesh is meant to act as permanent support for a hernia repair. The absorbable option will eventually degrade and lose its strength.
This type of surgical mesh is derived from an animal, namely pig and cow sources, and is considered an absorbable mesh. It is a suitable implant device, as it is processed and disinfected to serve such a purpose.
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Recalled Hernia Mesh Complications
There are a number of common complications that can be caused by the recalled hernia mesh devices. They include pain and infection as well as:
- Obstruction: A blockage in the small and large intestines causing food, gas, and fluid not to travel naturally.
- Adhesion: Fibrous scar-like tissue forming between the abdomen and organs.
- Fistula: An abnormal connection created between two body cavities such as the rectum and the skin.
- Seroma: A pocket of fluid developed inside the body after surgery.
- Perforation: A hole made in the wall of a bodily organ.
- Contraction: When the hernia mesh device shrinks after it has been implanted in the body.
- Recurrence: The breakdown of a hernia repair allowing the hernia to reappear.
These complications can happen without the hernia mesh as well but are more commonly reported when a recalled hernia mesh has been used for the repair. There are also reports of migration, where the hernia mesh is no longer secure to the repair site and travels somewhere else in the body.
Companies with Hernia Mesh Recalls
The three companies that have recalled hernia mesh products from 2005 to 2018 are:
- Atrium Medical: for improper packing
- Bard Davol: two separate recalls for the potential of ring breaking and causing bowel perforation or fistula
- Ethicon: three separate recall occurrences for high failure rates, potential to lose the laminate coating and packaging defect
Over 211,000 individual pieces of hernia mesh have been recalled since 2005 due to the possibility that they could cause issues if used in surgery. Unfortunately, many cases of these mesh products have been reported by doctors when complications began manifesting in the patients post-surgery.
Other Mesh Failure or Rejection Symptoms
Call your doctor if you begin experiencing any of the following symptoms of hernia mesh failure:
- Chronic pain or tenderness in the abdominal area
- Serious bleeding or blood in the urine
- Distended belly
- Nausea and vomiting
- Constipation or diarrhea
- Swelling, visible inflammation, or heat in the vicinity of the implant
- Symptoms normally related to the flu
Defective hernia mesh is responsible for many serious, life-altering health conditions and even death. If you or a family member has been a victim of hernia mesh complications, you may be entitled to compensation for your losses. Millions of dollars have already been paid out to claimants.
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Berger and Green Can Help with Hernia Mesh Medical Malpractice Claims
Call (412) 661-1400 to connect with an attorney at Berger and Green. Our team of lawyers is dedicated to our clients and have handled thousands of personal injury cases, including product liability. Attorney Laurence Green has over 40 years of experience providing high-quality care and legal representation. Call us today.