Clinical outcomes of mesh exposure/extrusion: Presentation, timing and management
Background: The Food and Drug Administration has recently highlighted an increase in reported complications associated with the use of transvaginal mesh. Aims: To describe the clinical outcomes, presentation, timing and management of mesh exposure/extrusion Materials and Methods: Retrospective study from December 2006 to March 2012. A total of 40 women had vaginal mesh exposure/extrusion secondary to prior transvaginal mesh (TVM) surgery. Descriptive statistics were used for demographics and pre-operative data. Paired-samples t-test was applied for comparison of pre- and postoperation. A P value of <0.05 was considered statistically significant. Results: The mesh exposure/extrusion rate was noted to be 2.64% (17/642). Vaginal bleeding in 29 of 40 (72.5%) and hispareunia in 12 of 13 (92.3%) were identified as the most common symptoms for mesh exposure/extrusion. The onset of complications occurred in two peaks: between 3 and 4 months and after 1-year of follow-up. Initial conservative treatment was given for 12.5% (5/40) of women, while 87.5% (35/40) had undergone repair for mesh exposure/extrusion (21 outpatient and 14 inpatient cases). Among those who had conservative treatment, 80% (4/5) had persistent mesh exposure. Conclusion: Persistent or new-onset abnormal vaginal bleeding and hispareunia after TVM surgery should be considered as 'red flag' symptoms for mesh exposure/extrusion. Frequent follow-up from the first 3-4 months up to 1 year postoperative may identify complications. Utilisation of mesh excision or trimming as the initial means of treatment may yield a better outcome.