Not too long ago, I had a comment on my post, “Finding the Right Doctor for Surgical Mesh Complications“.
Someone asked an honest question, and questions are always appreciated. They asked, “What is wrong with going to a Doctor to have your mesh removed, and this Doctor still uses mesh in procedures?”.
I wanted to share my response:
There’s nothing “wrong” with it… choosing your doctor is a personal choice, which I also said (in the article/post). You have to do what will work the best for you. This is also why I said:
“If they still implant mesh, how often do they still use it?
DOES THIS MATTER TO YOU?
Are they confidant they can help you with any repairs without implanting more mesh (assuming you do NOT want more mesh put in)?”
I said, “Does this matter to you” – because, for some people, it may not matter. For others, it does make a difference and they would prefer the doctor actually believes mesh is dangerous and a problem, as they do.
Either way, I think it’s good to know if the doctor does or doesn’t, because it brings up very legitimate concerns and questions like:
- If the doctor does use mesh regularly, do they just think your problems are unique? IF yes – will they even recognize or acknowledge the mesh is causing your problems and treat it as such? Too many do not.
- If they still use mesh, will they be able to make your repairs, if needed, without putting in more mesh? This is a big one. Too many doctors are not even trained anymore on how to do repairs without mesh. So, this could be a problem. Besides, IF they seriously don’t think mesh is the problem – why wouldn’t they put more in? Many women have wound up with multiple slings and mesh because doctors kept adding more. Ultimately, the more mesh that’s in, the harder it is to remove, if/when necessary.
- I also have to wonder, if they do still use mesh – and have “never seen any complications” (hard to believe in this day and age, but ok) – this means they also never removed any mesh, right?
So, I would have to question if they were even capable of removing it, without causing more damage? Full mesh removal is a very difficult and often risky surgery. In your case, you said this doctor was able to remove it all, and you are very happy with them – and that is awesome. However, many other doctors have “tried”, and failed miserably a the patient’s expense.
- If a doctor DOES believe that the mesh is causing major problems, and maybe they are doing more and more partial and/or even full removals – BUT they also still implant mesh regularly – what does THAT say?
To me, this is perhaps even more frustrating. I don’t get why any doctor who sees all the problems up close and personal, and knows how difficult (if not impossible) mesh is to remove – WHY would they keep implanting people with it as well?? Especially, when the FDA says there is “no evidence that mesh repairs have any clinical benefit over non-mesh repairs”? To me… this is just more of a moral thing, and I would have to ask myself if this is just about the $$ for this doctor? And, do I want to go to a doctor like that? Trust and confidence come into play.
All that said, I realize there are NOT many doctors out there who do not use mesh at all. Many are starting to, at least, use it more sparingly. (Which is what the FDA has asked them to do some time ago). However, many are still thinking it’s the “gold standard”, especially for SUI, and putting it in left and right. They are holding seminars, running ads, and telling people that the mesh for SUI is not the same as what the FDA warned about. Again, frustrating. Maybe more doctors, like the one you went to, will start changing their opinions… ?
So, I do believe it’s something worth knowing, and can matter a lot. However, again, everyone has to chose the best doctor for their own unique situation. And, if you find a doctor that WILL actually listen to you, believes you, AND has the skill to actually remove the mesh and they CAN and HAVE actually helped you? Well, that ultimately trumps all.
You actually getting better is what matters most!!
==============Related Mesh Me Not Blog Posts================
- Finding the Right Doctor for Surgical Mesh Complications
- Why I Went All the Way to UCLA for Mesh Removal Surgery
- Searching for Docs Experienced with FULL Mesh Removal, and/or NON-Mesh Repairs
- Partial vs. Full Mesh Removal Surgery
- Upstate NY Support for Mesh Complications
- Mesh-Injured People: NOT rare. NOT going away. NOT getting SUPPORT!
- It’s NOT enough. We need help!
- Are you a GOOD mesh? Or a BAD mesh?
- Were you told that you were the “only one”?
- FDA warns there is NO evidence that mesh provided any greater clinical benefit than non-mesh surgeries
- Top 10 Things to Know About Mesh BEFORE Having Surgery for POP or SUI
- Links to many other articles, blogs, support groups, and resources on the bottom of this blog