Vaginal mesh devices place the pudendal nerve at risk due to their allegedly defective design which is currently the subject of thousands of product liability lawsuits consolidated in MDL 2327 before the honorable Judge Joseph R. Goodwin in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of West Virginia. The lawsuits allege that pudendal nerve damage is caused by either direct injury during placement of the device or the body’s own immune response, which rejects the plastic implant.
Free Confidential Lawsuit Evaluation: If you or a loved one developed pudendal neuralgia after receiving a vaginal mesh implant or transobturator sling, you should contact our law firm immediately. You may be entitled to compensation by filing a suit and our lawyers can help.
What is Pudendal Neuralgia?
Pudendal neuralgia is a severely painful and disabling neuropathic condition involving dermatome of the pudendal nerve, according to the Global Library of Women’s Medicine (GLOWM). The condition causes pain in the clitoris, vulva, perineum, and rectum, particularly when sitting. Pudendal neuralgia has also been referred to in the medical literature as Alcock’s canal syndrome, cyclist syndrome, pudendal nerve entrapment, and pudendal neuropathy.
Pudendal Neuralgia Symptoms
- Numbness or pain in lower buttocks, genital region or perineum
- Sexual dysfunction (pain during intercourse and/or failure to acvhieve an orgasam)
- Disturbances in bladder / bowel function (incontinence)
- Pain from actions that do not normally cause pain (allodynia)
(Courtesy Center for Pain Management)
Entrapment of the Pudendal
The term "entrapment of the pudendal nerve" was first used by a group of male cyclists in 1988, according to ScienceDirect. The condition is alternatively referred to as cyclist’s syndrome, because compression and ischemic response of the pudendal nerve can result from a narrow bicycle seat. Entrapment of the pudendal is a “diagnosis of exclusion,” but should be considered in patients with chronic hip and pelvic region pain.
Pudendal Neuralgia - Causes, Symptoms, and Treatments: Pelvic Rehabilitation Medicine Video
FDA Warning on Transvaginal Mesh Implants
In July 2011, the U.S. Food & Drug Administration (FDA) issued a warning to patients and healthcare providers regarding adverse health complications which may result from the placement of mesh implants for the treatment of pelvic organ prolapse and stress urinary incontinence. The agency stated that when used for these purposes, serious complications are not rare and there was no clear evidence that transvaginal mesh repair is any more effective than traditional treatment methods, which are not as risky.
FDA said the risk of complications was directly related to the mesh and not due to surgical error. Statistical analysis revealed that pelvic pain occurred in 5.5-8.5% of patients and painful sex (dyspareunia) occurred in 1.6-7.3% of patients. The agency concluded by determining that pelvic pain is an unacceptable postoperative outcome caused by the vaginal mesh.
In addition to being potentially caused by vaginal mesh implants or transobturator slings, other contributing factors to the development of pudendal neuralgia may include:
- Diabetic neuropathy
- Trauma to the buttocks or pelvis including childbirth
- Excessive sitting (cyclists often have pudendal nerve entrapment)
- Thickening of ligaments around the pudendal nerve
- Bony formations pushing against the pudendal nerve
(courtesy Verywell Health)
How Common is Pudendal Neuralgia?
Experts familiar with the vaginal mesh litigation estimate that symptoms of pudendal neuralgia occur in approximately 1-2% of women. The lifetime cost of treating pudendal neuralgia is $1.4 million to $2 million.
For most patients with pudendal neuralgia, a combination of treatments typically offers the best chance for a full recovery. Treatment options may include:
- Surgery to remove vaginal mesh implant or transobturator sling
- Surgery to relieve pressure on the pudendal nerve
- Sit up straight or stand more often to help with nerve pain
- Don’t do squats or cycle
- Physical therapy
- Prescription medications
Patients with pudendal neuralgia will require significant, long-term medical care and rehabilitation which may change as they age. Patients are likely to benefit greatly from a life care plan, because it provides a comprehensive summary of needs and their associated costs. The most important part of the process is that patients are the drivers of their own management plan. Their physical, work, home and social goals should be the main focus.
Can I File a Class Action?
Although Schmidt & Clark, LLP, is a nationally recognized class action firm, we have decided against this type of litigation when it comes to pudendal neuralgia cases associated with transvaginal mesh implants or similar devices. Our lawyers feel that if there is a successful resolution to these cases, individual suits, not class actions will be the best way to get maximum payouts to our clients. If you’ve been diagnosed with pudendal neuralgia, we know you’ve suffered emotionally and economically, and want to work with you personally to obtain the maximum compensation for the damages caused by your injuries. Contact us today to learn more about your legal rights.
Do I Have a Pudendal Neuralgia Lawsuit?
The Product Liability Litigation Group at our law firm is an experienced team of trial lawyers that focus on the representation of plaintiffs in pudendal neuralgia lawsuits. We are handling individual litigation nationwide and currently accepting new injury and death cases in all 50 states.
Free Case Evaluation: Again, if you or a loved one developed pudendal neuralgia after receiving a vaginal mesh implant or transobturator sling, you should contact our law firm immediately. You may be entitled to a settlement by filing a suit and we can help.