My Support for UCLA

The past few day’s women have sent me notes because they are very upset over a public admonishment of Dr. Raz and his associates at UCLA and they are so worried and angry that this is going on. They have asked me to address it and to say that they believe in these surgeons and are very, very happy they went to them for mesh removal. The reason they cannot express it themselves, is that when they try on these forums, their good messages are removed. This is so upsetting for them, that they want someone to publicly state that they support these doctors.

I am going to begin by addressing the issue of posting these things on a public forums, either closed or open. Anything you say can be used against your case and if you blame any doctor publicly, then your case could be thrown out and you will lose out the funds you need to get well, or to put back in your retirement because you have already spent it to take care of your mesh complications at the present time.

You may be angry about something and you have every right to feel angry and address things that you are not satisfied with, but there are ways to do this. Common sense will tell you that every hospital is owned by a corporation and they have lawyer’s full time that will not allow you to sully their reputation. You could be sued for doing so. There are ways to handle a grievance. You can write to the administration and state your complaint. Remember if you do anything you will have to prove the doctor was negligent. You cannot just state something because you are upset or angry, you must have evidence to back it up. You can also contact the State offices that deal with these issues. Do not go blurting your grievances out in public.

If you contracted a doctor to remove your mesh, then you must realize that the type of mesh that was in your body may be very difficult to remove and may do damaged when it is removed. But if you wanted it out completely, then you must expect this to happen. You should also be aware that fixing you at the time of removal is not easy. Your body and tissue will be so swollen that anything done at the time may not heal properly. It will take time and the results may not be what you expected. However, you asked for it to be removed for a reason. It may be the pain you had, infections or other things that happened to your body while it was in you. That is why you chose to have it removed. Mesh was designed to grow into your tissue and getting it out can be very challenging.

Many women never need a surgery again after removal, but if you do remember there are other considerations about how well you will do. Your age. Damage to your tissues and more. I cannot imagine any doctor stating directly to women that another doctor destroyed their tissues and they themselves could have done better, but I am told that this is happening. It seems to me to be highly unethical at best. It also worries me because this adds fuel to the fire and women are upset at the idea of having their mesh removed even though they are in dire straights.

So, I will now state to you with hand on bible, that the doctors of UCLA have saved women’s lives and have given many a future, when there was little or no hope. Women live today who were at death’s door and Dr. Raz did their surgery when no one else would touch them. Please, pleases do not change the course for women who are in serious trouble, because you are upset with your own outcome.

You should instead look deep into what anyone has to gain by saying things to you or allowing them to be said openly to the public. You are just as responsible for the things you say whether in anger of the moment or not. Please rethink your actions.

33 Comments

  1. Tracey

    I had mesh removal with Dr. Raz at UCLA 7/25/2013. He said my mesh removal was quite a challenge and I am so glad that I had Dr. Raz do the removal. My pain is totally gone and I credit that to Dr. Raz’s skill and his wonderful staff. Dr. Raz is very professional yet very caring. He told me the truth even when I didn’t want to hear it. I knew that I was in good hands and that gave me comfort going into such a scary surgery. If I had to do it all over again I would go to UCLA even though it cost me more since I traveled from Texas and stayed 10 days at Tiverton House. In my book Dr. Raz is the MASTER and I will be eternally grateful.

    Reply
    1. lavalinda

      Tracey I am sure that Dr. Raz will appreciate your support of him. He is a much loved man.

      Reply
  2. Jane Akre

    Thank you Linda for your wise words for those who are hurting. There is so much hurt and anger, some of it no doubt misdirected at one another. Infighting is a sure way to bring great satisfaction to the real perpetrators. Thanks for your thoughtfulness on this issue.

    Reply
    1. lavalinda

      Yes Jane, I hope this will settle down and women will realize the important part is to do the best you can and live again. I have told women many times that our bodies may not be the same again after this, but we can enjoy life.

      Reply
  3. Jennifer Doyle

    Dear Linda,
    Thank you so much for writing this. I will always love Dr. Raz.
    And I will always love you for guiding me to him and helping me get thru this awful nightmare. I consider you both my guardian angels. Before my surgery I could hardly walk and I was in so much pain that some days suicide seemed like a better option. But because of you & Dr. Raz, I hung on, you both gave me so much hope. After surgery I felt like a new person! This is a long, tough journey and mine is still not over but because of Dr. Raz, I am no longer in agony each and every day of my life. Unfortunately, we all are guilty of having anger eating away at us because of what’s been done to us, but that anger should be directed to the mesh manufactures not towards the doctors that truly want to help. Dr. Raz could have retired long ago but because he cares for us he continues helping as many as he can. Peace and love to all…

    Reply
    1. lavalinda

      You are so right Jennifer. He chooses to travel world wide to teach when he could be sitting on an island somewhere enjoying a peaceful life. He is kind and caring to any women who goes to him and you feel this when you meet him.

      Reply
  4. Karen

    Dearest Linda,
    THANK YOU for your impassioned statement of support for UCLA and Dr Raz. I will just say that I am one of Dr Raz’s patients and I am SO GRATEFUL TO HIM for removing my mesh and saving my life. Let us not forget that mesh is meant to be a permanent implant. It is nothing short of heroic that Dr Raz and the other doctors at UCLA will attempt to get ALL of the mesh out while other doctors often deny that the mesh is causing problems, leaving their patients to suffer. For most mesh victims, mesh removal is just the first step and reconstruction surgery will be necessary. This is a fact no matter which doctor a woman chooses to go to for help. I understand that the pain and suffering caused by mesh complications can cause the victim to feel extreme anger and emotional trauma. However, it is a very sad shame when the victim’s emotions are turned against the doctor who agreed to help them by removing their mesh. I believe this is what happened in the unfortunate circumstances you are describing, Linda.

    Dr Raz has helped THOUSANDS UPON THOUSANDS OF WOMEN get their lives back. He has trained urologists around the world and received prestigious awards and medals for his work. He is a highly esteemed, world class surgeon. I cannot imagine that he would ever have the need to diminish the work of another urologist to his patients in order to elevate himself. It is unfortunate if some doctors are discrediting Dr Raz, whatever their reasons.

    To the women reading Linda’s blog who are in need of mesh removal, please heed Linda’s words and be cautious about what you read about doctors on the forums. There is a lot of helpful information and support to be gained on these forums, but remember that some of the members’ posts come from emotion, not fact. Do your own research when choosing a surgeon, perhaps interview more than one until you find the right surgeon for you. For me, the surgeon who removed all of my mesh and gave me hope was Dr Raz. I am just one of many women who will forever be grateful to this man!

    Reply
    1. lavalinda

      Thank you Karen for your wonderful testimony.

      Reply
  5. Debbie

    Dr. Raz did my removal surgery last month (Jan 2014) and successfully removed 100% of the mesh! He and his staff are wonderful! I trusted him with my life and he did a great job. I owe Dr. Raz and his staff a lot. I am already in less pain than Ive been in years!

    Reply
    1. lavalinda

      Debbie I am so glad he got it all out of you. I hope you are improving daily.

      Reply
  6. a meshed-up nurse

    Thank you Linda for a thoughtful, well-written blog. Dr Raz is a skillful surgeon and a humble person, with no ulterior motives but to help women injured by mesh. Dr Raz is my hero, and a hero to many others too!

    Reply
    1. lavalinda

      I hope women will read this and realize he has dedicated his retirement years to helping women live through this travesty. Nothing is perfect and of course things go wrong but there is so much to look at about your situation. These doctors are doing their utmost to try to give women their lives back again. That is his only reward for continuing working.

      Reply
  7. Lisa Pashenee

    I was told I could die from my infections. I could not wait for Dr. Raz, and he referred me to his associate, Dr. Larissa Rodriguez, whom he works with every day. Aug. 2012, Dr. Rodriguez/UCLA saved my life. One surgery and I was completely healed, with a full removal of my mesh. I will forever owe my life to Dr. Rodriguez/ucla. No one else would believe that it was the mesh. Ucla takes on the most complicated cases and the sickest women, and removal of mesh has no guarantee of complete wellness, but for me it was. I believe UCLA has removed more mesh than any other doctor in the world. It is their specialty. I have talked to many women who have had their mesh removed, and even if they need subsequent surgery, which many do, they are happy. There is always one bad apple in the bag that tries to spoil the rest. UCLA gave me my life back!

    Reply
  8. Bella

    Thank you Linda for writing this and for your support of Dr. Raz and all of us. I have to say that all of this talk has scared me and I was getting scared and confused again. Being hurt and lied to and done wrong by many doctors before it is hard to trust and when I started hearing this I was scared which is in itself scary as I have not mentioned to anyone what is going on with. I will say that there is a possibility of renal failure and possible dialysis in my future before surgery depends how fast things progress with me. Dr Raz is suppose to my surgery and as I stated I started becoming scared. I have been on the edge of ending it all for a while now with several mental and emotional breakdowns. The sad thing is as you are well aware of not only is it hard for us to trust the medical community but also people in general. I hide behind names so I can speak as there have been too many times that I have seen someone get put down or not receive help or support or I have heard about it or I have experienced it. All this talk about the drs now was like icing on the cake. I get it I understand when something does not go the way you planned or something goes wrong. You get angry and upset and you have a right too but unless you plan to take action the oBly thing you need to say is this happened to me not by who just what and if you have to tell someone do as I did and tell someone you trust verbally not in writing never in writing and never eever anywhere on the Internet because that is permanent even if you think you delete it from the forum or fb page it is still there either by an automatic saved copy on a server somewhere or worse is you never k ow who may have seen it and withered directly shared it (fb), forwarded it (email) or copy and pasted it or did a screen shot of it. Anyway thank you Linda. I know it may not seem like it but I think of you often.

    Reply
    1. lavalinda

      Bella, women like you are the reasons I wrote this blog. It is so hard to deal with mesh injuries without dealing with more confusion over things written in anger. It is not good information and I believe that any support group administration has to take control and remove any messages that are fits of anger. Yes women need the truth and confirmation that they are not crazy when dealing with mesh injuries which is why they go to support groups. I understand that. But to blast a doctor who I know has helped women live again, albeit not the perfect healthy life they lived before, should not be treated this way. He has done his best with a highly difficult situation and many women are such a mesh by the time they get to him. Unless their health truly cannot stand surgery, he has not turned one of them down. I speak to those women who yes are terribly mesh injured, but they are grateful to live again even in small ways. Mesh destroys lives and that is the truth. But we have to continue to try to live again.

      Reply
  9. Chelsea

    Wow, I must say I was 2 days away from having a partial removal when I found this blog( not by coincidence either), after 2 years of research also. I canceled the surgery and immediately called Dr. Raz. I will stand here today as a mesh free women and thank Linda for guiding me to him and him and his associates and office for removing something that has changed me as a person in every sense. Is he God? No, is he working on this earth as an angel of God, I believe yes. No one and I mean no one that I went to would even discuss removal with me except for him. He gave me a hug and was honest and kind and I had just met the man. He should be on a beach somewhere but instead he has chosen to give up that to help so many of us that have suffered. That is called an unselfish, kind , caring, compassionate, loving person who in my book is considered Christlike. Linda, Jane Akre, Dr. Raz and associates and all the other women who fight for us you have my utmost respect, love and I will eternally be grateful for those who put humans and their should above money, politics, greed and pride.

    Reply
    1. lavalinda

      Chelsea I am so glad you are happy and you are speaking out for Dr. Raz. I understand some women will not have good results due to the fact of type of sling, damage caused and many other factors but it is not Dr. Raz’s fault. Thank you for your appreciation of a many that keeps on helping women.

      Reply
  10. Chelsea

    I meant their souls. I also have to return in June for a fascia sling. I just turned 40 and I wear depends everyday, but if I wouldn’t have had it taken out I might have been dead. You have to know that all I have been through and will continue to go through, I would make that choice to see him again in a second.

    Reply
    1. lavalinda

      Chelsea there are so many women your age who have suffered far too long because of mesh complications and although it is a long road to live again, I have no doubt your determination is extremely important. You will move forward and live you life again.

      Reply
  11. Kviau

    I tried to contact Dr Raz today because my life, like a lot of yours, has turned into pain and peeing my pants hell! I have to say the girl that answers his phone at his office (Erica) was NOT very nice and definitely NOT interested in helping me at all! I would love to email him to find out about how to find a doctor in Colorado, where I live, that is capable of doing and reading a translabial ultrasound. I’m even willing to travel to CA if I need to but she wouldn’t give me his email address. I asked if my doctor could call him and all she had to say was “He can try”. From what I’m reading he’s a great doctor but if I can’t talk to him I can’t get the help I need! Does anyone have his email address please?!

    Reply
    1. lavalinda

      Kviau I am sorry this happened and sometimes these people just don’t get how we live with this. However, there is an office manager and you should complain when you go there. Those who answer phones must be compassionate. I will send you an email. Unless you are his patient you really cannot expect him to work with your doctor. Best to get a consult appointment and go there.

      Reply
  12. gina

    I just made my appt. For Dr. Raz! That was so quick and nice compared to other appts. I have Been trying to make. I have decided to go to Dr. Raz my appt. Is for June 4th at 10am! My journey has began to get this…Out! Now getting my financial stuff together. I will definitely let you know how my journey will go.

    Reply
    1. lavalinda

      Gina you cannot imagine how glad I am. I know the difficult decision you have made. I made it too and it is really hard. But things will get better. You said your doctor wouldn’t give you the op report. That is because he won’t have it. You have to go to the hospital where the surgery is done and get it there. You need this information. They cannot refuse to give it to you.

      Reply
  13. Lisa

    I just made a first appointment with Dr. Raz – but it is not until mid July – then surgery may not be until next year. I don’t know if I can wait that long. Jane at Dr. Roz’s office said he has trained Dr. Una Lee in mesh removal. She practices out of Seattle WA. Has anyone heard of her – or gone to her for mesh removal?

    Reply
    1. lavalinda

      Lisa, Go to Dr Lee. She has been able to help some women but there are certain kinds she has told them that only Dr. Raz can remove. Don’t cancel any appointment with Dr. Raz but make an appointment and see what she says. You don’t need to go to the back of the line again.

      Reply
  14. cindy

    how do find this dr raz to see if the kind of mesh I have is removable, I have been told in ny and boston it is not, thanks for your time

    Reply
    1. lavalinda

      Cindy Look up at the top at doctors drop down link.

      Reply
  15. Zoe1975

    Dear Linda, thank you so much for your very informative blog. I am diagnosed with cystocele and uterine prolapse after the difficult birth of my beautiful daughter. I have severe UI as a result + all the usual difficulties with a fallen bladder. My doctor suggested mesh repair as the anterior vaginal wall is difficult to repair with a durable result. I want to avoid this, and came across UCLA and the crisp method. I could read from your blog you had this procedure done: are you happy with the results? And do you know anything more now about the long term results of the crisp procedure? Thank you so much in advance for your response, and thanks again for your blog. Kind regards, “Zoe”

    Reply
    1. lavalinda

      Zoe I did not personally have this method done but I know women who did and they are doing well. Everything depends on your tissues and your lifestyle and you may not need this procedure as there are others. This procedure is done on the worst cases. Best thing to do it go for a consult and ask questions about your situation. There are now new women that work with Dr. Raz and I am told they are really good at spending time with new patients and answering their questions. You will have the best treatment available there and whatever can be done for you without mesh, will be.

      Reply
  16. Linda

    Somewhere in all this information is Dr. Raz’s email address but I cannot locate it today. Please share his email address.

    Thank you.

    Reply
    1. lavalinda

      This man receives thousands of emails and unless you are already a patient, he can’t do anything.

      Reply
  17. Suzanna Candy Lafont

    Linda.. I am beginning my journey as like many of you… I have an appt. scheduled with Dr. Raz on Aug. 26th, 2015. I am in Louisiana. I have so many questions… any way that you communicate one on one via email?

    Please advise,

    Reply
    1. lavalinda

      Suzanne I have written blogs to cover everything, travel what to wear, things to take and what it is like to go out there including wheelchair assistance. There is a blog with many links and I will give it to you. http://meshangelnetwork.com/2013/02/mesh-is-a-journey/ Please understand that I used to communicate via email and phone, but it took every minute of my waking hours and I had to change.

      Reply

Leave a Reply to Debbie Cancel reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *