TVT Sling Complications
Although the TVT sling is considered the standard of care in sling surgery today, complications can still occur. It is very important to note that it may not be the mesh itself or the procedure that is the cause of the complication, it may be how the mesh is placed or how the body heals around the mesh that may be part of the underlying cause. For example, if a patient is a smoker, her tissue may not be as well vascularized as a non-smoker and therefore she may be at higher risk of the incision not healing well and then a mesh extrusion could occur. Of course, the qualities and properties of the particular brand or type of mesh used may also play a role in complications.
Some studies have actually shown that the TVT sling has higher cure rates than traditional surgery for incontinence (ie the Burch or MMK) with lower complication rates. TVT sling (Gynecare, Johnson and Johnson) was the first sling of this type on the market and now many other companies have similar products such as the SPARC procedure (American Medical Systems) and others by Bard Urology, Boston Scientific, etc. All of these slings are similar to the TVT as they use needles passed through the abdominal wall and an incision under the urethra to place the mesh tape sling.
Below are examples of TVT-type Slings:
- TVT *Gynecare
- Align *Bard Urology
- IVS Tunneller *US Surigcal
- SPARC *AMS
- Lynx, Advantage *Boston Scientific
- T Sling Desara *Caldera Medical
Types of Complications
Vaginal mesh extrusion / visible mesh
Difficulty emptying bladder
Vaginal pain / painful sex
Lower abdominal pain
Mesh erosion in urethra / bladder / colon