Incontinence What If

I have tried to assure women that when you have complete mesh removal, you may NOT wind up with incontinence, but many seem more concerned about that possibility than the real serious issues at hand. So today I decided to write a short blog to once again address this issue.

If you have been following my blog, then you know I had complete mesh removal this past October 11th 2012 at UCLA by Dr. Raz. By the time I got there, incontinence was the least of my worries after two years and seven months of suffering. I knew of course that if my urethra was damaged by mesh, then there was a chance it could happen. However, I knew women who had a small amount of damage and they were not incontinent after removal, so like everything to do with this mesh journey, I decided to set my fears aside and concentrate on the bigger issue. I was in so much pain.

It turns out I was one of the women who had serious mesh damage to my urethra and became completely incontinent after removal. Yes, I felt angry and disappointed. I would not be human if I didn’t. I felt extreme anger because before the sling was placed in my body, I used a small thin pad just in case I had a bout of coughing or sneezing which was rare, but I liked feeling clean and protected. Now I have complete and utter incontinence. It is enough to upset anyone, but if you handle this with a ‘poor me’ attitude, you will sink into depression. That will not help your state of mind or body. So I set up my bathroom to handle my situation and began an endless routine of how to keep things in order, keep myself and my bathroom clean. Then I set up a way to handle things when I went out. I only go to the stores these days and it isn’t fun to always be thinking about what to do if I wet myself. Yes I am putting it out there with exactly what we all fear. Embarrassment. What if I wet myself in public? Those are the real questions women want answers to. You know what? My answer is so what? This happens to us all because of a mesh product that should never be put into women’s bodies and IT IS NOT OUR FAULT. So I will handle this if and when it happens and I am not going to stay home and bury myself in fear of the possibility.

Dr Raz told me I could go back for a new sling made of my own tissue three to four months after my surgery, but I decided to give my body six months before I am assaulted with more anesthesia drugs. It is my choice to wait this long but I am trying to do the best I can for my future and try not to worry about the ‘what if’s’ of incontinence while I wait for surgery. So my appointment is made next month for that surgery and I am no different than every other woman out there. I worry. BUT, I also know I am going to a place I can trust that no mesh will be put back into me while I am unconscious. The surgeons know what they are doing and they do these kinds of mesh free, bladder sling surgeries constantly. So I have to take a chance for a ‘wet free’ future and I am willing to do this with those who are well trained and caring.

So here are things you need to concentrate on, not the incontinence issue. If you have infection after infection and antibiotics don’t work, then slowly but surely you will find yourself in agony with deep tissue infection. The mesh is holding bacteria inside it and nothing you take or do will stop the infection from spreading. Without it is removed from your body, YOU WILL DIE! It’s as simple as that. When you lay in bed every day in agony, then you are in trouble but it isn’t too late. Don’t leave it until you cannot pick yourself up off the bed and fly out to UCLA.

So what are the things I concentrate on now?

I never got a decent night’s sleep because of pain in my right side, before the mesh was removed. How am I now? I sleep all night pain free while in bed.

I could not move around my house without fear of falling because my right leg could barely take weight because of terrible pain that travelled from my groin, hip, back, down my leg into my foot. I felt someone had wrapped a tight band around my thigh and left it there. That is now GONE!

I kept a walking stick and hoisted myself up onto my right leg that responded with agonizing pain. I resorted to a walker when the pain got very bad and it was hard leaving the house. Now I only need a walking stick away from the house. No I am not uninjured from this mesh product, and it is hard to accept. But I am a hundred times better than I was.

So once again stop putting small obstacles in place in your head. It may never happen and if it does, deal with it then. “Get the mesh out now before it kills you”. That is the biggest message of this blog.

This link will take you to the many links so that you understand the journey it takes to remove mesh and how important it is to go to the right doctor.


  1. Joann

    Hi Linda,

    It’s been awhile since I have been in touch with you or able to keep up with your postings. My computer crashed and I lost all my email contacts most importantly all the “meshies” you put me in contact with. I am writing to you from my current email address. Had my consult in December with Dr. Raz; surgery coming up in May. Please email me when you have the time. you have been a great source of help.

    1. lavalinda

      I certainly will. I hope to give you other ladies to meet once I know your date. Everything will be better


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