Old & Dying with Mesh
One year ago I wrote a blog about mesh and the elderly because we had just taken in a small dog whose owner was very sick, thought to have dementia. We spoke to her daughter when we picked up the dog and again after over the phone where I asked her questions about her mother. It kept going around in my brain that it was possible that the woman could have mesh and the infections were causing her symptoms. I was right. You can read that blog here
I know there must be thousands of women who are having these same symptoms and the family has no clue that mesh is the cause and worse yet neither does the victim. The reason is older people believe in their doctors so much and will follow them blindly not know what is being done to them. Today I am writing this blog for the daughters and granddaughters who have no idea why their loved ones suffer. I am doing this because of another conversation my daughter had with a young woman whose grandmother she believed has dementia.
My daughter sees things go through her Facebook feed about dogs and she sometimes private messages the owner to see if she can help with guidance. This is because the rescue world is not any better than the mesh world and when someone advertises a small cute dogs, rescues want to jump in to make a buck off a cute little healthy dog. As you can imagine Kim gets infuriated by this because cute healthy little dogs do not need a rescue, they just need a loving home. Rescues should not be involved at all in this because they can easily be homed without any interference by a rescue. Rescues should concentrate on taking in dogs who need help or from shelters and rehabilitate them so that they too can find a loving home. But it doesn’t work the way it should.
When she messaged the woman, Kim was concerned for her grandmother because Kim’s dad, my husband died of dementia almost twelve years ago and it is really hard on those who love them. The granddaughter was seeing her grandmother in decline and showed dementia symptoms. Kim asked her a few things and the comeback was that the woman had Lupus, fibromyalgia and R.A. All these things triggered in Kim’s mind and she spoke of it to me. We both knew there was a really good chance the woman had had surgery in the last few years and mesh had been placed in her body. Without help she will die a very slow and agonizing death and her relatives will be none the wiser.
Upon further questioning, Kim said the younger woman said her grandmother had nonstop UTI’s and doctors could not figure out what is wrong with her. This is what makes me so angry I am taking time this morning to write. They KNOW what is wrong with her but they cover it up. Doctors now KNOW the symptoms of mesh complications but they prefer lying to make sure they cover up for their buddies, who are urologists, OBGYN’s, and urogynecologists. They will keep doing this regardless of what is happening to women and it makes me extremely angry.
This is part of it.
The orders will require manufacturers to address safety concerns, including severe pelvic pain and organ perforation, through a rigorous PMA pathway to demonstrate safety and effectiveness. The actions apply only to mesh devices marketed for the transvaginal repair of POP. These orders do not apply to surgical mesh for other indications, like stress urinary incontinence (SUI) or abdominal repair of POP.
“These stronger clinical requirements will help to address the significant risks associated with surgical mesh for repair of pelvic organ prolapse,” said William Maisel, M.D., M.P.H., deputy director of science and chief scientist for the FDA’s Center for Devices and Radiological Health. “We intend to continue monitoring how women with this device are faring months and years after surgery through continued postmarket surveillance measures.”
None of this report will make one darned bit of difference without women first speak out and second report their complications to the FDA to build the numbers to the proportion of complications that is really the truth.
Here is why I am asking for your help today. First is this. Have YOU reported your mesh complication to the FDA? If not why not? Why is it so important? It is because if every woman sits back and doesn’t do it, this will continue happening to thousands of women. I wrote about this very early in my blog and asked women to do it, and yet I know many think just because they have been treated, everyone knows. Or because they filed a lawsuit, the lawyer will do it. Or their doctor will do it. NONE OF THIS WILL HAPPEN!
Reporting your complications is giving other women a chance at not going through what you went through. You do need to know what was implanted and then you just follow directions on line or call and talk to someone who will take the details. After that a couple of weeks later you will receive a letter to verify your report. Read this blog and I beg you to do it now if you have not already done so. When should you do it? NOW……………. I don’t care if it is five years later, I beg you to do it NOW!
Here we are four and a half years later since the FDA first put out a warning. A WARNING! NOT a recall. I still deal with new women who were recently implanted and have serious complications. You can read that first warning here
I was so naive back then when the first report came out. I believed it would change things, but now I know none of this will without all women do the right thing and report their complications. I was still in so much pain because my implant was in March 2010 and I had no way to get the surgery to remove it. There was no chance at getting insurance and I had to wait for Medicare which only came 2 years and 7 months after implant. By that time I was in dire straits, but I had learned so much from other women who went out to UCLA and had the best chance at surviving mesh complications. So that is exactly what I did and it was removed three years ago this past October.
Almost six years later since it happened to me I see no slowdown of mesh implants. In fact recently I wrote a blog where I wrote of my concern with the aging population who are easy victims of unscrupulous doctors who want to make money from MEDICARE recipients. They are easy marks for doctors. What can you do to help stem the tide?
Those who will be more likely not to know what is happening out there are those have not mastered the English language. The generation of people who moved to this country to give a better life for their families. Women who have had children are at high risk. Those who had several children are at an even higher risk for incontinence, prolapse and hysterectomy where an implant is installed without their understanding what it is.
If you are a daughter or granddaughter of an older woman you must learn how to talk to them and bring up the subject. I know your life is busy, working and/or raising children. I know it can be an uncomfortable conversation. But you MUST have it to help these women either with getting the right kind of help, or not getting into this position in the first place, which is the best for their future.
Sit down and have a quiet conversation by asking if they had any surgeries for female problems over the last ten or twelve years. If the answer is yes, you need to help them get the records from the hospital where it was done. Forget the doctor because they won’t keep records of what was used. If you can, get a rough month of the year of implant. If not they can do a search by name. The person has to go with you to sign for the records, but you can do the talking. Understanding about getting their records for them if they can’t go is very important. This will help you with that information
Will it cost you money to get power of attorney. Change it to your State before you download. Here is a free form.
If you go to get your loved ones records only to be told they don’t have them anymore, then they will be in storage. Learn all about that here
There are many signs of mesh complications that most family members would overlook thinking it is old age. Infections and immune disorders are rampant with mesh. You can read about that here
Lupus is very common. Read about that here
Read what one woman said about here symptoms here
Bowel disorders are rampant when mesh erodes through the bowel. Read more here
You cannot imagine how lonely mesh complications are for those who are dealing with it but read this and you will understand
Is there a chance for your older loved ones to have successful removal? Yes there is but you will have to help them get there. Read this story and you will understand
This blog took me two hours to write. Two hours of my life to try to save as many of the older generation as possible. But I can’t do it without you. You the loving daughter, granddaughter or other relative who is watching your loved one suffer and had no clue why. Two hours for me is worth it to try to stop the slow slaughter of aging women. I hope you will share this to change the lives of all older women. Thank you if you do.