Dangers of Hernia Mesh

The attorneys at Fleming, Nolen & Jez are currently investigating the complications that can affect patients whose hernias were treated with a mesh prosthetic.

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Dangers of Hernia Mesh

A Hernia is a defect, weakening or hole in the abdominal wall where it shouldn’t be. The attorneys at Fleming, Nolen & Jez are currently investigating the complications that can affect patients whose hernias were treated with a mesh prosthetic.

  • 1,000,000 Hernia Surgeries performed annually 
  • 90% of these surgeries use a mesh prosthetic.
hernia mesh

Common Hernia Symptoms:

  • Visible bulge in the abdominal wall especially with coughing or straining
  • Hernia site pain or pressure

A surgical consultation might be requested.

Hernia Locations:

  • Inguinal – occurs in the inner groin and is the most common.
  • Femoral – occurs in the upper thigh/outer groin.
  • Incisional – occurs through an incision or scar in the abdomen.
  • Ventral – occurs in the general abdominal/ventral wall.
  • Umbilical – occurs at the belly button.
  • Hiatal – occurs inside the abdomen, along the upper stomach/diaphragm.


Treatment Options:

  • Open – incision is made near the site, the hernia is repaired with mesh or by suturing the muscle closed.
    Laparoscopic – hernia is repaired by mesh or sutures inserted through instruments placed into small incisions into the abdomen.

A small hernia should not need mesh, these can be repaired with sutures.

In the event a hernia requires more, Hernia mesh is used to supplement or reinforce damaged or missing tissue. There are various types of hernia mesh; some are made to remain permanently inside the body, while others are made to eventually be absorbed by the body.

Types of mesh used:

  • Porcine (pig skin) biologic
  • Bovine (cow) biologic
  • Cadaver (human) biologic
  • Synthetic (polypropylene)

The majority of mesh is made out the same plastic used in soda bottles that are woven together. Certain hernia mesh products have been associated with increased rates of complications and the majority are synthetic. Polypropylene is the same material that is used to make many types of pelvic mesh and bladder slings, those same products were involved in a massive lawsuit.

Just like these crates, the material is not designed for use in implantation in the human body or contact with internal body fluids or tissues according to the MSDS (Material Safety Data Sheet). May 2016, Ethicon issued an Urgent Field Safety Notice, asking hospitals and physicians throughout the country to discontinue using Physiomesh and to return the products to the manufacturer. The product weakens and fails over time. Aside from the possibility of additional surgery most of these issues go away after the C-Qur is removed. C-Qur is the only mesh coated in fish oil.

Symptoms to watch for:

  • Constipation
  • Trouble Urinating
  • Tender Scar
  • Fever / Inflammation
  • Tissue or mesh erosion into organs

Ethicon’s Physiomesh and Atrium’s C-Qur are both linked to higher rates of failure than similar mesh patches. However, these are not the only hernia mesh products associated with increased complications. 


Can it get Worse?

  • Hernia can expand with mesh
  • Hernia may never go away
  • It might become incarcerated
  • Mesh infection doesn’t get better with antibiotics, it needs to be removed
  • Additional surgeries and hospitalizations


An incarcerated hernia is when the intestines become strangulated outside the herniated area constricting blood supply; this situation will need emergency repair.


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