Sexual function in women following transvaginal mesh procedures for the treatment of pelvic organ prolapse

Ching-Chung Liang, Tsia-Shu Lo, Ling-Hong Tseng, Yi-Hao Lin, Yu-Jr Lin, Shuenn-Dhy Chang
International Urogynecology Journal 2012, 23 (10): 1455-60

INTRODUCTION AND HYPOTHESIS: Synthetic mesh kits recently adopted in pelvic reconstructive surgeries have achieved great surgical efficacy, but the effects of transvaginal synthetic mesh procedures on women's sexual function are still controversial. This study was conducted to demonstrate sexual function in women before and after surgery with transvaginal mesh (TVM) repair for pelvic organ prolapse (POP).

METHODS: A total of 93 sexually active women scheduled for correcting POP with synthetic mesh kits were recruited. In addition to urogynecological history, pelvic examination by the Pelvic Organ Prolapse Quantification system, and urodynamic testing, consenting participants were asked to complete the Pelvic Organ Prolapse/Urinary Incontinence Sexual Questionnaire (PISQ-12) to evaluate sexual function before and after surgery.

RESULTS: At the 3-month urodynamic studies, among the 25 patients with coexistent urodynamic stress incontinence (USI) who had undergone a concomitant transobturator suburethral tape procedure (TOT), 1 (4 %) had persistent USI; 8 of 68 (11.8 %) patients with a negative pessary test developed postoperative USI. Six-month prolapse recurrence rates following TVM alone and TVM with concomitant TOT were 9 and 12 %, respectively. The total PISQ-12 score after surgery showed worse results in the TVM alone group but not in the TVM with concomitant TOT group. The individual scores of PISQ-12 after surgery demonstrated prolapse-related items improved in both TVM groups; sexual function worsened in dyspareunia and behavior domains.

CONCLUSIONS: Our data revealed that transvaginal synthetic mesh procedures for the treatment of POP generated favorable clinical outcomes, but situations might worsen in dyspareunia and behavior domains, thereby invoking a negative emotional reaction during intercourse after surgery.

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