Complications of polypropylene mesh for the treatment of female pelvic floor disorders

Arch Esp Urol. 2011 Sep;64(7):620-8.
[Article in English, Spanish]


Objectives: To assess the complications of polypropylene mesh in the treatment of female pelvic floor disorders.

Methods: Retrospective study of patients with pelvic floor pathology (SUI, cystocele, rectocele, enterocele) undergoing pelvic floor intervention with surgical meshes from March 2002 to October 2009. We evaluated complications, effectiveness of the technique and distribution of the impact of the results. For statistical analysis SPSS software was used and the curve of impact was estimated by Cox model.

Results: We analyzed 363 patients. Of these 363 patients, 290 (79.9%) suffered from Stress Urinary Incontinence 37 (10.2%)cystocele, 33 (9.4%) SUI and cystocele, 1 (0.3%) SUI and enterocele, 1 (0.3%) cystocele and enterocele and 1 (0.3%) cystocele, enterocele and rectocele. The interventions done were: 34 (9.4%) anterior and middle compartment meshes, 1 (0.3%) middle and posterior compartment meshes, 1 (0.3%) TOT and middle and posterior compartment mesh, 36 (9.9%) TVT and 3 (0.8%) TVT and anterior and middle compartment mesh. The median follow-up was 36 (3-90) months. 50 patients (13.8%) presented complications: 21 (42%) had lower urinary tract irritative symptoms, 10 (20%) externalization of the mesh, 3 (6%) necrotizing fascitis, 3 (6%)obturator fossa, thigh root or vaginal abscess, 5 (10%) chronic pelvic pain, thigh pain or dyspareunia, 2 (4%) bruising and bleeding, 3 (6%) urinary tract infections, 1 (2%)mesh entering bladder and 2 (4%) obstructive symptoms. The procedures were effective in 350 (96.4%)patients. The impact of complications was manifested in the first 10 months after surgery.

Conclusions: Polypropylene meshes are very effective in the treatment of female pelvic floor disorders. Approximately 10% of the patients had complications that resolved spontaneously or with medical treatment in most cases. One third of the complications are subsidiaries of surgery, by removing the mesh totaly or partialy, without affecting the intervention results.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Female
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Humans
  • Lower Urinary Tract Symptoms / epidemiology
  • Middle Aged
  • Necrosis
  • Pelvic Floor Disorders / surgery*
  • Polypropylenes / adverse effects*
  • Postoperative Complications / epidemiology*
  • Recurrence
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Surgical Mesh / adverse effects*
  • Urinary Incontinence
  • Urologic Surgical Procedures / adverse effects*


  • Polypropylenes