The TV commercials and radio advertisements are everywhere – if you have recently undergone hernia repair surgery, you may be entitled to recover for any complications suffered as a result. Not only is it important to understand that this is an option, it is also important to understand why, and what to look for after your surgery. Becoming part of a lawsuit for a defective hernia mesh product can be appealing for several reasons: not only because it provides a remedy for the pain and suffering you have gone through, but also as more studies are conducted to find which mesh products are causing problems, more corporations are being added to lawsuits, including giant corporations like Johnson & Johnson. With the addition of more corporations, comes the increased likelihood of large payouts. After reading this, if you feel that you have been affected by a defective mesh product following your hernia repair surgery, contact your medical provider to see if it was produced by a company like Johnson & Johnson (through their Ethicon unit) that is known to manufacture faulty mesh products.
Depending on the type of surgery, and the amount of damage, the way mesh is used may vary from patient to patient. But in general, the mesh is sutured on the abdominal wall, either on top of or behind the wound site. Once secured in place, it allows for new tissue to grow while simultaneously protecting the growth site. However, recent studies have shown that certain mesh products, especially those made out of polypropylene (like Ethicon’s Physiomesh) are not conducive to working with human tissue. In fact, recent studies have shown that “the scientific evidence shows that the polypropylene material from which the product is made is biologically incompatible with human tissue and promotes a negative immune response in a large subset of the population implanted with the products.”
You may be asking why surgeons continue to use this mesh in their hernia repair procedures. Recent studies, although many of them are apparently funded by mesh manufacturers, have stated that using mesh, “the repair can be done without putting tension on the tissue, which in turn reduces the likelihood of a hernia recurrence … [some studies] suggest that half of all hernia repairs without mesh fail, while only 20 percent of mesh repairs fail.” Despite the potential for skewed studies, the general consensus among medical providers still seems to be that using mesh is the trusted, recommended, and most common way to conduct hernia repair surgeries.