Women from the Fens urged to attend a major review into mesh implants in Cambridge
PUBLISHED: 17:04 13 October 2018
Women suffering complications following a mesh implant operation are urged to attend a hearing in Cambridge where they can tell their stories to a panel of experts.
A tour of the UK to speak to women experiencing complications from pelvic mesh implants is inviting women from Fenland.
Baroness Cumberlege is leading the review, and is talking to women whose lives have been changed beyond repair, following an operation performed to treat conditions mostly caused by having babies.
Kath Sansom, of Sling The Mesh campaign group, which has 7,000 members, said: “The pain this procedure can cause is indescribable.
“I’ve been in contact with many women in Cambridgeshire who are suffering serious complications from mesh implants used to treat incontinence and prolapse.
“This procedure was promoted as a ‘quick fix’ for urinary stress incontinence – but the plastic can twist, shrink, go brittle and fragments fall off inside the body.
“It can attach and slice through organs causing chronic pain, sepsis, loss of sex life and for some women they need to have their bladder or bowel removed.
“Women contact our group feeling suicidal from the pain pelvic mesh implants have caused them.
“If you, or a loved one, have been experiencing complications following the procedure then I urge you to share your story with Baroness Cumberledge and the Government’s independent review.”
A survey in Sling The mesh showed that eight in ten women suffer pain from mesh implants that affects daily life.
Half suffer constant painful urinary tract infections and a A third have been forced to give up work.
One in six have suffered a marriage breakdown and one in seven are unable to care for their young children.
Seven out of 10 have lost their sex life while six out of ten suffer depression and anxiety from the daily pain.
The same polypropylene plastic material is also used to fix hernias and a growing number of people are joining the support group suffering pain from hernia mesh, Kath said.
In July, NHS England accepted a recommendation to temporarily suspend pelvic mesh implants until March 2019.
• The Independent Medicines and Medical Devices Safety Review hearing for pelvic mesh implants is at Homerton Conference Centre, Hills Road, Cambridge, on Monday October 15 from 1.30pm to 3pm. Anyone can turn up to tell their story on the day. There is no need to book.
• Travel expenses can be reimbursed as part of the review Participants will need to submit all travel receipts, with economy or standard class used on public transport whenever possible.
• Those unable to attend can email their experiences to Reviewteam@kcl.ac.uk.
• A free counselling service is also available for anyone who needs support as a result of participating in the review. The Hotline can be reached on 0121 314 7075.
• The BMJ publish a podcast talking to three women whose lives have been affected by pelvic mesh implants.