British Women & Mesh
On the 20th July 2017, British women gathered in London speak out against the use of mesh implants.
A few days after these women gathered, I called my eldest sister in England for a chat. She still lives in the town we were born in which is Luton in Bedfordshire, thirty miles north of London. First thing she asked was, had I heard the news about mesh and women in England. I smiled and said of course I had, because I know many British women who are suffering and they wanted to do something to stop the use of mesh. Then she told me that the local radio station was asking sufferers to call in and tell them how these implants had affected their lives. So Lutonian women did and they spoke of all the things we all know happens to women and how it had ruined their lives and marriages.
So, I wanted to let British women know through this blog, that what they did, the effort and pain they went to, to travel from home and stand in a crowd, even when they didn’t feel like it, IS now paying off. Not only that but I also heard from women in England, who had suspected for years that the implant was at fault for their own illnesses, but no doctor would admit it or believe them.
The problem is, many of the side effects are autoimmune, which is a reaction to the materials in these implants. Autoimmune disorders can occur without the implant, but if you were a very healthy woman without any illness at all, and then things changed quickly after the implant was put in your body, then you are right, even if no doctor will agree with you. What can you do about it? The only thing I can suggest is keep searching for the right doctor who will believe you and try immunologists until you find one who will listen and believe what is going on with your health.
Right now, here is a paragraph from one of the newspapers who covered this gathering of angry women.
“Women, husbands and their children cried during the two-hour meeting as women told how mesh had left them disabled, husbands left them or they had lost jobs and suffered depression or severe anxiety from having a simple 20 minute operation – sold as a quick and simple fix to incontinence or prolapse often caused by childbirth.”
This is only a small sample of the side effects because many are so awful to talk about in public and women don’t. Things like fecal and bladder incontinence. Cleaning up after yourself and being afraid to leave the house, because you have no idea when it will happen while you are away from home. So, the following statement, is just too simplistic and much more work needs to happen to uncover this terrible journey for so many women.
“Mesh is a much bigger problem than admitted, better data collection is needed, the proper risk rate must be uncovered.”
I knew that there was a group on Facebook called Sling the Mesh, but I am not on any support group these days, choosing to live my life as best as I can, without more stress. By asking a British friend about her, I have learned that Kath Sansom is an injured woman herself and is also a journalist in England. So, she has the right clout to pull women together and begin this difficult venture. I truly hope all her efforts will be successful to stop this carnage. This is more from one newspaper article.
“Retired surgeon John Osborne, said he tried to warn the medical community about the danger of mesh from the 90s but nobody listened.
He said: “First do no harm. Hearing all these stories; it’s appalling what’s happened. I want to apologise on behalf of my profession.”
Owen added: “This is the first time women have been heard in Westminster. You’ve done something really important today.”
Mesh removal expert Suzy Elneil said: “I find meeting the women hard, yet equally they are the reason I keep going.”
It shocks me and upsets me knowing there’s a better way,” she said and added when she watched her first mesh sling incontinence operation in 1997 it was like seeing a slow motion car crash in the pelvis.
• Around 126,000 mesh implants and tapes for incontinence and prolapse have been used in England alone since 2006.”
Even if it were ONLY 9 to 10% of women who have complications, and believe me I don’t believe that is anywhere near what the truth is, then apparently 12.600 women don’t count and they are replaceable. Why is there this attitude against women?
Throughout history, women have always been at the bottom end of the totem pole and yet because they reproduce the next generation, they are treated as human experiments and are dispensable according to the medical industry. If doctors truly listened to the side effects women are experiencing and not dismissing their claims, then you would find that not only is there a higher percentage of injuries, from the actual surgery, but as the years go on, more and more women experience complications as the mesh erodes through women’s organs. Does this matter? Well according to the National Health which governs all medical implants in the U.K, those who experience these complications, are throw away women.
I do have a suggestion for these women in Great Britain. It is my experience that women of all color and origin are experiencing these complications, but if they are older and do not speak the language, they can’t express what they are dealing with, and they will be even less believed. I say this because the women in the photos, look a majority of white women and it won’t show the true picture that I am aware of in the U.S. Mesh does not discriminate against color or religion, so somehow, they need to find these women and get their point of view by interviewing with an interpreter. Here is my suggestion as how to do it.
In every community, there is a home health care nurse in Great Britain and these are usually R. N’s who go to people’s homes when they are too ill to go to a doctor. This also saves the National Health a great deal of money, because hospital beds are expensive. If you contact each healthcare clinic and ask about these women or even men and women, when it comes to hernia mesh, then ask for help in interviewing these people, then this should give a much clearer picture. How do I know this.
After one of my surgeries I would up with a serious infection and no urologist would help me. So, a young female General practitioner in my area, decided to help me. Without her I would not still be writing this as I probably would not still be living. My young personal care doctor, set everything up so that I was hospitalized for the initial treatment, then home health nurses continued my treatment, until the infection was cleared. Believe me I am very grateful for what they all did.
Not only did they come to my home every day, sometimes twice a day to take blood work and check the IV treatment, but of course they began asking me about the mesh. Sadly, I learned one of the nurses was having problems, but could not afford to take time off work to deal with it. Since then, I have often wondered about how she is doing. Not only this, one told me that a woman hernia mesh patient was suffering badly and they were trying to do all they could for her. Sad, sad for me to hear. So yes, home health care nurses, know what is going on and although they may be reticent to help because of their jobs, they could redirect you to visit with patient families. It is worth a try, because this kind of suffering can often be beyond belief and shoved under the rug.
If you cannot go through this avenue, then this is for Kath Sansom. Do a new newspaper article and appeal to the families for help find these people. All it takes is one patient, or her family, to tell the world just how bad this can get. I know because I have heard from many women in this country who are home bound and suffering
There are more things that need to be addressed and I feel must be addressed to the British public so that they are informed of the truth about just how bad things can get after a mesh implant. The first thing is, the amount of antibiotics that have been handed out to women and the side effects of those drugs. Many can cause lifelong health effects that can be as bad as the implant complications. Drugs like Fluoroquinolones, with names like Cipro and Levaquin that can shorten a woman’s life and cause many other types of surgeries. The public needs to learn that to try to combat these drugs that no longer work on these serious infections, old drugs have been put back into use, with even worse side effects, such as deafness and extreme dizziness without any cure. These drugs are Gentamicin, Vancomycin and others in the same family. I know about them because I live with this extra disability, besides all the ones caused by a Boston Scientific implant, that has left me with permanent dizziness, even after more than four years since IV treatment with this drug.
Another serious issue is all the women who suffer from addictions caused by the pain medication prescription drugs and what that does to their lives. It is hard for women to admit this has happened to them because of the stigma attached, but it must be acknowledged as a serious side effect of these implants. It is not women’s faults, it is the fault of the companies who make and push these implants, the hospitals who stocks them on operating room shelves and the doctors who don’t stand up and say “No” to implanting women with dangerous products.
I have been preparing for this blog, by reading the many stories that are now coming out of Great Britain, before I posted and I just read a really interesting news article and wanted to add it here. I normally use excerpts, but I felt this article is so good, it deserves to be complete, including links to what has been written about.
It just came out on July 27th and was written by Harriette Marsden of the Independent News in England. I will give you the link to this story at the end of this blog.
The Mesh Oversight Group Report, in response to a 2015 interim paper and in conjunction with a March independent review in Scotland, came out this week – to address what’s being referred to by senior doctors as the most serious women’s health scandal since thalidomide: transvaginal mesh procedures.
And yet, barely a whisper in the headlines. And ultimately, a devastating blow to campaigners and victims. And a threatening precedent to women’s health in general.
The Mesh scandal
The transvaginal mesh implant (TVM) is a widely prescribed treatment for common complications following childbirth, such as urinary incontinence – leaks with coughing or sneezing – or pelvic organ prolapse, where the internal organs can bulge into the vagina.
A plastic mesh is blindly inserted into the vagina, or vaginal wall, with a set of hooks, and left there to support the womb. Functioning rather like a canvas grocery bag, and made of the same material that’s used to make drinks bottles. According to a 2012 government report on concerns – and yes, this has been on the radar a long time – the procedure is performed on about 15,000 women in the UK per year.
Side effects can range from chronic pain and loss of sexual function, to major complications like the implant protruding through the bladder, or bowels, even necessitating removal of organs ensnared in the mesh. It can shrink inside your body, slicing through nerve endings, tissue and organs.
The Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA), the government medical devices watchdog, has received more than a thousand complaints, yet continue to maintain that there is only a 1-2 per cent risk. But Professor Carl Heneghan, director of the Centre of Evidence Based Medicine (CEBM), tells me that the real number of hospital re-admissions is closer to 19 per cent, depending on the procedure.
Dr Sohier Elneil, a consultant in utogynaecology at University College Hospital, suggests that unpublished research by her team puts the number at 9 per cent re-admission, for meshes to treat incontinence. And that’s just for serious complications.
Kath Sansom, a journalist and campaigner, had the procedure to treat minor and occasional stress incontinence in 2015, and began suffering severe symptoms 10 weeks afterwards. She tells me that the procedure was marketed as “a very simple and quick fix; perfect for busy working mums to be back at their desks in a week, with the risks very much downplayed”. She tells me of the constant pain: in legs, feet, groin, bruising – and private parts “burning so badly it’s like someone has poured a bottle of chilli sauce inside it”.
Five hundred patients in Britain are in legal action with mesh manufacturers and 2,000 plan to sue The sad part of this is many could not file at all because the time to do so was up, before all the lawsuits began. This is unacceptable and the time constraints on these implants should be abolished.
“For some women,” she says, the mesh “literally slices clean through their vaginal walls – so not only does that hurt, but it cuts their partners during sex. Want to know what surgeons give to try and fix this? Ovestin cream – what a joke.” Ovestin cream can have serious complications and I have written a blog explaining why these hormone products can have deadly consequences. This is that blog. http://www.meshangels.com/harmless-hormone-or-dangerous/
Kath began to research the procedure, and stumbled upon a huge swathe of fellow victims. In response, she started the Sling the Mesh campaign, to try and raise awareness of the risks. At the moment, 500 patients in Britain are in legal action against mesh manufacturers, and up to 2,000 are planning to sue: particularly Johnson & Johnson, a high-profile manufacturer of the device.
In America, there are over 100,000 women currently in litigation. Over there, it’s been upgraded to a higher-risk device, after the FDA issued a public health notification on serious complications back in 2008, citing that the hooks can cause injury to up to 40 per cent of women. Politicians in Scotland, including the former Scottish Health Minister, called for operations to be suspended all the way back in 2014. And yet, there were no such calls in England, Ireland or Wales. In America, the lawsuits are closing down after most began in 2011-12. Lawyers will not be taking new cases unless there unless more women report to the FDA.
There are around 100 different types of mesh implants are still available on the NHS; to date, not a single one has been recalled. MHRA has found “insufficient evidence” to justify a ban. Sadly, the FDA in America rarely recalls even the most dangerous of drugs, unless many people have died. It is difficult to prove how many women have died because of their implants, because they die from causes from the implant itself, but no one wants to admit it. This is how our FDA works. It will explain more about the American system. http://www.meshangels.com/how-the-fda-works/
So the report: two years in the making; 10 years in the campaigning; eagerly awaited by politicians and medical professionals who called for a public inquiry, and desperately anticipated by thousands of women suffering chronic pain, serious physical and sexual complications, as well as loss of quality of life. And the official proclamation from the NHS on the use of “barbaric” transvaginal mesh on women – which offers no hint of change in medical policy, admittance of culpability or offering of apology. I have read this report and the European report and I feel the NHS is one sided. Why? Because they have set up a teaching establishment in Bristol, teaching doctors from around the world how to implant women and they profit from doing this. I am now hearing back from women in other countries where this is going on and they are suffering and being ignored, just like here and inGreat Britain. You may want to look this up, if you are a reporter and do a story about it.
In response to its publication, Labour MP Owen Smith has publicly stated that women will be “extremely disappointed by the outcomes of the final review, which seem to have made little progress since its interim report came out over a year ago. The only people pleased with this report will be the medical device companies who marketed mesh so diligently, and who now fear mass litigation.”
There are so many facets to this story: commercialisation of the medical device market that financially incentivises procedures, and poor regulation that allows the untested devices on the market in the first place. Lack of funding or trained medical professionals for alternative procedures. Shame, stigma, sexism, and a lack of value on female sexuality. How was this allowed to happen?
The report also effectively whitewashes the most important issue. There is a stunning lack of knowledge or care about the psychosexual side effects of vaginal surgeries in general – and an inherently misogynistic devaluation of a woman’s sexual fulfilment.
Simply put: sexual damage to women is not only not known about as a side effect of surgery; it’s also not considered to be a serious one.
In 2017, is a woman’s sexual fulfilment really such a minor consideration?
Professor Heneghan, also a GP and an expert in device regulation, explains how the mesh made it on to the market in the first place – without proper trialling or long-term clinical data.
The protogen was brought out in 1996, and approved with some short-term trialling. In 1998, serious concerns emerged, so they withdrew it from the market; however, during that two-year time period, several other similar devices had been already approved, which were not withdrawn. There was already one bout of lawsuits in 2008, here in the U.S. that were not widely advertised, so none of us knew about them or the consequences of these implants. I found out about it, when a woman who was part of that lawsuit, contacted me. Since then she has died after ten years of a living nightmare.
And how? To get a medical device approved, you can go to any notifying body across Europe and be given Conformité Européenne (CE) accreditation. Once the device is approved in one EU member state, it’s automatically approved across all of them. The process also allows you to use the concept of ”substantial equivalence”: if your device is similar enough to others already on the market, you can get approval without clinical trial data – just a literature review of existing evidence, and some animal testing. Yes, it is a total farce, designed to get drugs and implants through in any way possible, with as little money spent.
And unlike a drug approval, which requires a phase 1, 2, and 3 randomised human trial to establish benefits and harms, there is no such regulation for medical devices. There were studies on animals and all failed. I wrote about one done on sheep and this is that blog. http://www.meshangels.com/mesh-in-sheep/
They have also done studies on dogs, rats and all turned out bad. Coloplast which is a company located in Denmark produced a mesh that was then used in eleven dogs. I wrote about it and gave all the information. http://www.meshangels.com/coloplast-products/
Any clinical trial data is short term – three to six months, usually. Not nearly enough time for a proper investigation into the long-term implications of surgical procedures. I hear from women who had no problems until ten plus years later, then they had to have it removed.
And in fact, Professor Heneghan says, most of the clinical trials follow after the device has been on the market for some time. “It’s the loophole everybody’s missing,” he says. “These devices are used prior to establishing they’re safe, and that’s where there’s been a catastrophic and complete failing of device regulation.”
To prove this, in 2015 Professor Heneghan participated in an investigation with The Sunday Times: he produced a fake report for a Dutch journalist about the advantages of netting used as a surgical aid – the kind of netting used to carry oranges. They were told there would be ”no problem” getting it approved. I watched a video on what they did and nothing about what these companies will do to push their way into the medical market, surprises me anymore. The stakes are millions of dollars and very tempting to these people.
There’s also a lack of funding or availability for more appropriate non-surgical treatments, such as pelvic floor physiotherapy, which in France is a standard after women have babies. It’s estimated that these could help 60-80 per cent of women, who would then not have to endure more invasive surgical procedures, and all their possible complications. Surgeons and hospitals cannot make huge profits from doing pelvic therapy. These days medicine is all about profits.
Dr Elneil, Kath Sansom and all the gynaecologists I spoke to also explained that women are encouraged towards ‘quick fixes’ like the mesh, over more time-consuming, traditional procedures like the burch colposuspension or the autologous sling, which can take up to four hours, followed by a few nights’ stay in the hospital. It takes much more training to do these types of surgeries, training time that no one wants to pay for.
Ultimately, says Professor Heneghan: “It boils down to baseline profits for the big medical corporations. Commercialisation is a huge issue – the amount of money being made by individuals or companies. Most of these women are starting asymptomatic, with a small prolapse. These devices are costing thousands pounds.” Professor Heneghan, you are right on the money. People do not matter, profits do! Why train someone to use a woman’s own tissue, when any good or bad surgeon can open up a package, sitting on an operating room shelf and greed is satisfied by manufacturers, hospitals and surgeons. People be dammed is their attitude.
In response to the report, the MHRA released this statement from John Wilkinson, director of devices: “In common with other medical device regulators worldwide, none of whom have removed these devices from the market, we are not aware of a robust body of evidence which would lead to the conclusion these devices are unsafe if used as intended.” You could shove evidence right up their noses and they would turn away. This has been proven by the amount of women worldwide, who suffer and doctors ignore their pleas for help.
Many women suffer for decades following an episiotomy with chronic pain and sexual dissatisfaction
Not aware. Therein lies the crucial point that the report has missed: the lack of proper data for side effects.
It uses evidence of rates from Hospital Episode Statistics, but the problem with using HES data in this way is that if a woman has complications, and she goes to her GP, but not the hospital, then she is not included in the stats. Many side effects which are reported, aren’t included in the report. G.P’s are prone to the idea that because they can’t see an issue, women are crazy and they will write this in notes about the women. Notes that stigmatize forever. Another thing that needs to be addressed.
And what of those who were ignored? Women, such as the 100 that attended the parliamentary meeting on 18 July to discuss the issue, have spoken of “not being listened to” and feeling “consistently dismissed”. As Dr Elneil says: “There’s definitely a gender issue about it: a lot of women are just expected to carry on; many are told that it’s nothing serious.” Gender issues have been happening since man came on this earth. Women have always been second class citizens.
There are also potential conflicts of interests at play: some of the surgeons in some studies may have been paid by Johnson & Johnson with a research or fellowship grant. Another issue is the focus on the immediate success of operations, rather than on long-term effects. For many women, these procedures do work to treat prolapse or incontinence; they just do damage elsewhere. Manufacturers not only have their noses into every aspect of doctors and hospitals, their greed doesn’t stop there. When one company quits selling, one of the larger manufacturers will be in line to take over. Yes, I have evidence of that. Read this and see. http://www.meshangels.com/mesh-danger/
As Sansom says: “We’re not debating efficacy. But my God, it has some hideously catastrophic impacts on quality of life.”
And what of those side effects which aren’t reported? Shame, ignorance, lack of self-care or awareness of what’s normal…these are all issues surrounding women’s health in general, and the vagina in particular. Many women still feel too embarrassed to discuss sexual problems in any medical capacity, or even admit them to themselves.
Twenty years ago, even speaking about incontinence and prolapse was taboo. And, says Dr Elneil, “It’s only recently sexual function is something we discuss face to face on a regular basis. It’s the last of the taboos coming to the fore.
“For women generally there’s a tendency – especially with issues regarding sexual function and the vaginal area – to be told to just get on with it. Think back to mothers and grandmothers – it was expected that you would have incontinence and prolapse when you have children, and you should just live with it.
“Also, there’s a tendency for women being busy people in life – they put themselves at the back of the queue. It’s usually their children first, and husbands after that. Then they get to a certain stage in life when they feel their responsibilities for others have been addressed, and they can address their own issues. By that time, they will have suffered in silence for years.
“And there’s a thought that if there’s nothing horribly wrong, they’ll ignore it. More sinister symptoms like chronic discharge or bleeding will make them go to the doctor, but pain or discomfort during sexual intercourse – that they’ll tend to forgo.”
Nowhere on the report is there any mention of the psychological or sexual side effects
It seems that the report shares this mentality. Nowhere on the included leaflet about improved guidelines is there any mention of the psychological side effects and damage to sex life that women can experience. But Sansom tells me: “Half the women I spoke to [who had received a mesh] said they felt they been sexually neutered.” There are so many other stages of dealing with mesh complications and so much anxiety. http://www.meshangels.com/the-anxiety-of-mesh-complications/
Trialling on animals certainly wouldn’t have taken into account any effect on sexual fulfilment. A rabbit, sheep or dog can’t tell you that they’ve lost sexual function.
The other surgeries
This has far wider implications for vaginal and gynaecological surgeries. Mr Amer Raza, a consultant gynaecologist at the Lister Hospital, tells me: “In my experience, many women suffer with consequences of vaginal surgery (whether an elective plastic surgery or unpreventable perineal tear in vaginal delivery) silently, for a long time.”
Any operation, be that vital hymen repair procedures, episiotomies, or any other vaginal surgery, is associated with some post-operative pain. But crucially, any surgery in that area also has a psychological and anxiety-related relevance, which can result in long-term sexual dysfunction. That’s not a side effect that is ever discussed.
Memory of trauma to the area, even after the pain has worn off, also has the potential to result in the serious condition of vaginismus – the involuntary tightening of the pelvic floor muscles as a result of psychological anxiety. It makes penetrative sex extremely painful, if not impossible.
It’s thought that roughly two in 1,000 women – although the real number is likely to be significantly higher – suffer from the condition, which is notoriously difficult to treat, because of the combination of physical and psychological elements.
Sometimes, doctors even prescribe botox injections into the vagina: a short-term, little studied process that is designed to temporarily weaken the vaginal walls, allowing the patient to break the cycle of anxiety and pain and achieve penetrative sex, as well as plastic dilators and vaginal pessaries of anaesthetic gel, all designed to train and numb the area.
What’s not offered is psychosexual counselling to address the underlying psychological distress. Because it’s not available on the NHS. It is not available here either and any counseling is very expensive. Not only that, but counsellors have no idea about the complications of these implants, so they cannot address the feelings women have. It needs to be specialty training. Who’s going to pay for that? Not the NHS of course.
Dr Elneil was part of the team that first developed the use of botox in the bladder for overactivity, where trials were able to show good efficacy and safety. “But for the use of botox in treating vaginismus,” she tells me, “there’s not much evidence to suggest it’s a good long-term therapy, and therefore more robust trials should be done.”
And what of episiotomies – slicing between the vagina and the anus, to aid childbirth? Delivery is high speed and panicked; any prior discussions of long-term side effects are, by default, unlikely.
Mrs Pisal wonders: “Is loss of sexual pleasure considered an acceptable risk? Good question. I don’t think it is discussed well with patients as a long-term risk. I don’t think patients are well informed about what can result. There really isn’t much of a choice anyway – you either have to do an episiotomy, or a tear.”
And yet, many women suffer for decades following an episiotomy with chronic pain and sexual dissatisfaction.
Many women who had received a mesh said they felt they’d been sexually neutered
And what about the psychological trauma of sexual dysfunction itself? Self-hate, shame, disgust, fear that a partner will never find you acceptable, fear of being unloved, damage to relationships…the list goes on and on.
As Sansom says: “It’s so embarrassing for a woman to talk about loss of sex life, and it’s almost as if medical professionals know that women will be too embarrassed to talk about it. Therefore, it can be massively downplayed within the risks. I have tried to get women to write about this, but none have so far. This is because it is such a painful subject. Some have told me they have told their husbands to go and find someone else to have sex with, not because they didn’t love their husband, but because they do and feel terrible about not being able to join them in this fulfillment of their marriage.
“If there was the chance of a man losing their sex lives, there’d be absolute outrage.”
In 2017, is a women’s sexual fulfilment really such a minor consideration? If this really is a scandal on the scale of thalidomide, where’s the national outcry? When women don’t report side effects, or side effects go ignored, or those side effects aren’t even discussed as risks, how can you say due diligence is being taken?
When the deregulation of the medical industry – and nobody knows what will happen in that respect after Brexit – combines with commercialisation and funding cuts; when lack of understanding of long-term side effects collides with lack of importance of a woman’s sexuality, all in the most delicate, complex, stigmatised part of a woman’s body – we enter into a maelstrom of shame and pain, in which only women bleed.
This is the direct link to this article. http://www.independent.co.uk/news/long_reads/transvaginal-mesh-vaginal-procedure-surgery-tvt-gynaecology-thalidomide-womens-health-psychology-a7862126.html
Soon after these articles began to appear and were shared throughout Facebook, a long-time mesh suffering friend wrote this. She wants women in Great Britain to know they CAN do something to change what is happening and will continue to happen to women throughout this country.
“Due to two Mesh injured contacts overnight, asking for help with their forthcoming MP visit, I’ve written down some ideas :
You don’t have to be mesh injured to help with this Campaign – just a worried citizen! – You can pick the bones of this text and use what is relevant to you to visit or e-mail your MP to help raise concern.
So, friends and family, if you would like to call upon your MP to help support Owen Smith in a suspension on Surgical Mesh implants, here are some ideas, bearing in mind that this is written for Mesh injured people that attended the recent Parliamentary Lobby.
***If I’ve left anything out and someone wants to add something, please, jump in !! ***
If you could write an e-mail telling your MP how you have suffered because of a Surgical Mesh Implant and that you know that this is a global problem because you belong to Mesh Support Group sites all over the world.
Surgical Mesh is used to repair hernias in men and women, and also to treat stress urinary incontinence and pelvic organ prolapse, usually caused by childbirth.
I would say that you’ve recently attended a large meeting in Parliament in support of Kath Sansom’s ‘Sling The Mesh’ Campaign which was hosted by Owen Smith MP.
Many MPs and Consultant Surgeons attended the Lobby to hear the traumatic and haunting experiences of many Mesh Injured People – There were 100 of us who travelled from all over the UK and we also forwarded a register of over 380 names of women who were unable to attend because of ill-health and also due to lack of space in the Committee room, which was packed. Many people were standing and late-coming MPs backed out of the room because they couldn’t gain access.
Owen Smith has now launched an All-Party Political Group in order to investigate the use of Surgical Mesh and it’s adverse affects. There will be another Parliamentary meeting after the Summer recess and Owen Smith is now calling upon The Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt, to hold a Parliamentary debate. Mesh Injured patients in England, Wales and N Ireland are hoping for a suspension of it’s use, in-line with Scotland which, with all thanks to the Scottish Mesh Survivors ‘Hear Our Voice’ Campaign, led to a suspension of the use of mesh implants in 2014. The Scottish Government called for an independent review into Mesh Implants and the report came out earlier this year, but it was deemed to be a whitewash by MPs and Mesh Survivors, with four people, including the head of committee, two patient representatives and also a consultant surgeon, resigning, due to a deleting of facts and a ‘cleansing’ of the report, rendering it biased in favour of the use of Mesh – There is now being held a Review of the Review!
The English Review report is supposed to be published today, but patients are extremely skeptical of the outcome.
Ask your MP to please support Owen Smith MP and all of the UK Mesh injured patients, to gain a suspension on Surgical Mesh Implants until there has been long-term trials, mandatory reporting of adverse events by surgeons, a direction to patients to report all adverse events to the MHRA and until a register of the UK Mesh injured has been implemented. The MHRA rhetoric is that the Benefits outweigh the risks, but there is NO true data or statistics to support this.
Please also tell your MP that this is just the tip of the ice-berg! There are hundreds of thousands of people injured, globally. Many people don’t even realise that their problems are due to their mesh implant because so little is known about the adverse effects.
Tell your MP that everyone in the Global Mesh Community is calling for an outright ban.
Thank you to everyone for helping and fighting in these Campaigns.
Not one more should be harmed by these torture devices.
Protect our future generations.
Here is the link to the first article http://www.cambstimes.co.uk/news/women-injured-by-mesh-implants-are-furious-at-an-nhs-report-that-rejects-calls-for-a-ban-1-5125158