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Am J Obstet Gynecol. 2001 Feb;184(3):297-302.

Vaginal mesh erosion after abdominal sacral colpopexy.

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Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Duke University Medical Center, Durham, North Carolina, USA.



Our goal was to compare the prevalence of vaginal mesh erosion between abdominal sacral colpopexy and various sacral colpoperineopexy procedures.


We undertook a retrospective analysis of all sacral colpopexies and colpoperineopexies performed between March 1, 1992, and February 28, 1999. The patients were divided into the following 4 groups: abdominal sacral colpopexy, abdominal sacral colpoperineopexy, and 2 combined vaginal and abdominal colpoperineopexy groups, one with vaginal suture passage and the other with vaginal mesh placement. Survival analysis and Cox proportional hazards models were developed to examine erosion rates and time to erosion between groups.


A total of 273 abdominal sacral vault suspensions were performed with the use of permanent synthetic mesh. There were 155 abdominal sacral colpopexies and 88 abdominal sacral colpoperineopexies. Among the 30 combined abdominal-vaginal procedures, 25 had sutures attached to the perineal body and brought into the abdominal field and 5 had mesh placed vaginally and brought into the abdominal field. Overall, mesh erosion was observed in 5.5% (15/273). The prevalence of mesh erosion was 3.2% (5/155) in the abdominal sacral colpopexy group and 4.5% (5/88) in the abdominal sacral colpoperineopexy group (P not significant). The rates of erosion when sutures or mesh was placed vaginally were 16% (4/25) and 40% (2/5), respectively, and were significantly increased in comparison with the rates for abdominal sacral colpopexy (hazard ratio, 5.4; 95% confidence interval, 1.6-18.0; P = .005; vs hazard ratio, 19.7; 95% confidence interval, 3.8-101.5; P < .001). These variables retained their significance after we controlled for other independent variables, including age, concomitant hysterectomy, concomitant posterior repair, and estrogen status. The median time to mesh erosion was 15.6 months for abdominal sacral colpopexy, 12.4 months for abdominal sacral colpoperineopexy, 9.0 months in the suture-only group (P < .005), and 4.1 months in the vaginal mesh group (P < .0001).


The rate of mesh erosion is higher and the time to mesh erosion is shorter with combined vaginal-abdominal sacral colpoperineopexy with vaginal suture and vaginal mesh placement in comparison with abdominal sacral colpopexy.

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