Sling the Mesh, a support group made up of people who say they have been harmed by mesh implants, conducted a survey showing 1 in 3 people who have received a polypropylene mesh implant developed fibromyalgia.
According to the Mayo Clinic, “fibromyalgia is a disorder characterized by widespread musculoskeletal pain accompanied by fatigue, sleep, memory and mood issues. Researchers believe that fibromyalgia amplifies painful sensations by affecting the way your brain processes pain signals.”
The survey questioned 187 mesh implant recipients, and 54 of them – or 29 percent- report they have developed the painful disease of fibromyalgia after receiving a mesh implant, reports the Wisbech Standard.
Polypropylene mesh is used to treat incontinence, prolapse and hernias. It is the type of mesh used in transvaginal mesh, used to treat pelvic organ prolapse and stress urinary incontinence. Thousands of lawsuits were filed claiming serious injuries linked to the device.
It is also the type of mesh used in Physiomesh, the hernia mesh made by Johnson & Johnson’s Ethicon. Physiomesh is now under scrutiny for the number of patients coming forward claiming their Physiomesh resulted in injury. Ethicon is facing a growing number of lawsuits linked to the device.
A study published by BMJ, an online medical journal, states that 5.4 percent of the general population suffers from the chronic pain of fibromyalgia.
“Our survey shows the incidence of fibromyalgia in mesh patients is around six times higher than what you would expect in the general population,” said a Sling the Mesh spokesman. “In mesh support groups globally we see people talking of the debilitating effects of this auto immune condition, which is why we decided to nail down some figures.”
The spokesman added, “In addition to those with a diagnosis a further 51 said they had many of the symptoms but had not yet received a formal diagnosis – 27.2 percent. There were also 40 who have developed inflammatory arthritis, one in five people.”
The unique five-layer design that makes up Physiomesh’s greatest selling point is the very reason behind the complaints, which claim that the coating used in the mesh device doesn’t allow the material to incorporate into the human body effectively. Lawsuits allege the multiple layers discourage adequate fluid drainage, which leads to a buildup of infection-causing bacteria. Many claim through lawsuits that the device was unable to sustain normal abdominal forces, causing the device to fail.