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Hernia Mesh Erosion?

September 15 2016 at 6:33 AM
Sheila Cunningham 
from IP address

In the mid 90's I developed a staph infection after abdominal surgery. The entire length of the incision was opened and I was told it would have to heal from the inside out. After 6 procedures over a 13 month period to clean the site the surgeon told me there was nothing else he could do so he sent me to a plastic surgeon to close the wound. A year later I had a massive incisional hernia. The same surgeon repaired the hernia. He told me later that he could not pull the muscle wall together and had to use the largest piece of mesh he had ever used. Over the years I went back because I felt something was wrong. He always dismissed me and told me it was in my head. Fast forward to 2004.. I developed an open wound on my abdomine that grew to be as big as the length of my hand. Again he said it was not the mesh. The wound would not heal so ultimately I had the area of the wound surgically removed by a different surgeon. It healed nicely. Fast forward to today. I again have an open wound on my abdomin that will not heal. It started as a small area four years ago and continues to grow. I have been treated by my primary care dr, a dermatologist and ultimately another surgeon wh said it was superficial and removed the offending area. Unfortunately it refused to heal so I went to wound care for 6 months where they were finally able to get a thin top layer of skin to grow using collagen flakes. I have continued to keep it covered to protect tge area from friction but it has completely opened again. Yesterday when changing the bandage i noticed an area on the outside of the bandage that appears to be something hard protruding to the surface of the bandage like a piece of metal or plastic. I totally believe it is a piece of the mesh. Why is it that my dermatologist is the only person who thinks the problem is caused by the mesh inside me?

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SIN Syndrome

May 1 2017, 8:02 AM 

The body may in fact be pushing the mesh outwards. It has been researched in the field of pain medicine that SIN Syndrome may occur in a small percentage of patients. This is a chronic foreign body response to the mesh that will send pain signals constantly to brain. The brain responds producing more Nerve Growth Factor and sets up a cascading affect of pain. Basically, the nerves become really sensitive to pain and even minor issues with mesh cause major pain problems. The pain can also travel to other parts of the body as the NGF can be released into blood. It is usually recommended to remove the mesh and use body's tissue to repair hernia. This used to be the technique used by all surgeons before the mesh was pushed as the "gold standard". The mesh does decrease hernia recurrence, but also seems to cause pain in a subset of patients. Therefore, it is questionable whether the mesh should be used in patients who are experiencing chronic pain before surgery. They have a high percentage of SIN Syndrome and usually suffer many years until mesh is removed. There have been a number of suicides do to mesh pain syndromes. Therefore, it should be taken seriously by physicians despite the lack of training in chronic pain by most surgeons. The National Meshoma Foundation is a good place to start looking for answers.

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