Objective: We established a voluntary registry to collect data on the perioperative course of transobturator tape operations for stress incontinence.
Study design: Forty-seven centers completed a 1-page, 15-item questionnaire per procedure.
Results: Data on a total of 2543 operations with 11 different tape systems were collected. Intraoperative complications were noted for 120 procedures (4.7%). These included 85 cases of increased bleeding (3.3%), 10 vaginal perforations (0.4%), 10 bladder perforations (0.4%), and 2 urethral perforations. Reoperations attributable to the tape procedure were reported for 57 patients (24 tapes cut or loosened for voiding dysfunction, 11 vaginal erosions, 7 abscesses with erosions). One patient was reoperated at 14 days for a retropubic hematoma. There were no reports of bowel or major vessel injuries or mortality. Significant postoperative pain was reported for 12 patients (0.5%), although this was not specifically asked for in the questionnaire.
Conclusion: Significant complications with transobturator tapes are uncommon. Bladder perforations occurred more frequently with outside-in than with inside-out techniques. Vaginal erosions, abscesses, and pain may be more common with transobturator than with retropubic tapes, and this may be due to the structure of the tapes rather than to the route of passage.