Oliver recovers £255,000 in surgical mesh compensation claim
The use of vaginal mesh to treat stress urinary incontinence has been a contentious issue for both women and the medical profession for at least the last 10 years. The two most common operations use the Trans Obturator Tape (TOT) and the Tension free Vaginal Tape (TVT). In England the scale of patients impacted by mesh has been growing since 2013/2014.
In July 2018 the UK government announced the suspension of vaginally inserted mesh to treat stress urinary incontinence and pelvic organ prolapse. In 2019 the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence announced that the use of mesh could be resumed as long as certain changes were made in relation to its use. These included all vaginal mesh operations being recorded on a national database and operations performed by specialist surgeons at specialist centres.
Baroness Cumberlege published the First Do No Harm review in July 2020. After listening to over 700 individuals who had been affected by pelvic mesh, the hormone pregnancy test Primidos and the epilepsy drug Sodium Valproate, the review identified the overwhelming feeling among mesh injured women that they felt dismissed and that there was a significant number of women who did not know that they had mesh inserted. The review concluded that there was no evidence that the benefits of treating urinary incontinence with mesh outweighed the risk of life changing and life threatening injuries and it was recommended that the National Institute for Clinical Excellence (NICE) update their guidance.
Partner at Slee Blackwell solicitors Oliver Thorne has been instructed by a number of women who have suffered harm as a consequence of pelvic mesh, recovering substantial compensation on their behalf.
One case involved a women who had undergone a TOT procedure in 2005 to treat urinary incontinence. It was evident immediately after her operation that it had failed and further surgery was recommended. She underwent two further surgeries before her incontinence was rectified – in total she had 3 lots of pelvic mesh inserted. Some years later she began to develop chronic pelvic pain, sexual dysfunction, loss of mobility and repeated urinary tract infections requiring prophylaxis antibiotics which impacted her family and social life. The cause of her debilitating symptoms was identified as a calcified stone that had developed within the mesh. Part of the mesh had to be removed during a complicated procedure which unfortunately meant the her incontinence returned, but the procedure was successful in relieving some of her pain and recurrent urinary tract infections. She has since undergone countless procedures to rectify her ongoing problems caused by the amount of mesh that was used, but she has been left with restricting injuries and ongoing pain.
Supportive expert evidence was obtained at the outset of the case, but the claim was fully defended by the Hospital Trust. It took nearly six years to reach a conclusion, with the claim recently settling for £255,000 following out of court negotiations.
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