Carol Monaghan, MP for Glasgow North West, has spoken in a House of Commons debate on surgical mesh, and the dangers it poses to women.
The debate focused on a surgical mesh used to treat incontinence and prolapse. Many of those who have had the implant inserted were not warned of the risks, or provided with adequate information prior to the procedure and have since suffered devastating side effects.
The use of mesh is currently suspended in Scotland, and during the debate on April 19, the government was urged to enforce a suspension or outright ban across the UK.
Monaghan also called for Pelvic floor physiotherapy to be offered as standard on the NHS to new mothers, as is the case in France, which helps restore the core after birth. A ‘Sunshine Payments Act’, as there is in the US, was also called for to highlight any conflicts of interest medical professionals may have.
Commenting, Monaghan said:
“The issue that is raised repeatedly in all these cases is the lack of information patients were given prior to the procedure. Some were told it was simple, others that a little piece of tape or sling would be inserted. None were told about side effects or complications.
“Medical devices do not go through the same level of testing as drugs, and often the effects are not experienced immediately. This is why it is so important to carry out an audit into women who have had the procedure and their current health status.
“Mesh implants have been described as ‘the gold standard treatment’ for Stress Urinary Incontinence and as a ‘minor procedure’ that would change lives. Sadly, many found the procedure did change their lives, they ended up in wheelchairs or crippled with nerve damage. And crucially device manufacturers who have marketed Mesh so aggressively are making a profit on this.”