Mum ‘unable to walk more than 10 minutes’ after NHS mesh implant sliced ​​her organs


The treatment is now ‘paused’ by the NHS but Anna Collyer faces a battle to get the implant removed and has had to quit work as a carer because of the pain

Mum left 'unable to walk for more than 10 minutes' after vaginal mesh sliced ​​organs
Mum left ‘unable to walk for more than 10 minutes’ after vaginal mesh sliced ​​organs

A mum has been left “unable to walk for more than 10 minutes” after an implant sliced ​​her organs.

Anna Collyer, 53, from Morden in south London, had a transvaginal mesh fitted in 2015 but has been left in agony following the procedure.

Her painful symptoms have persisted despite doctors partially removing the mesh last summer.

She worked as a carer in the same care home for 20 years but had to give up work due to the pain she’s suffering, MyLondon reports.

She had the mesh fitted at St Helier hospital in Sutton, a controversial procedure previously used to treat mild incontinence, which is a condition that can lead to women leaking from their bladder when doing impact activities such as running and jumping, or when sneezing or coughing .

A London mum says she has been left in “agony” and only able to walk 10 minutes at a time after a transvaginal mesh implant perforated her organs



The mesh is a net-like implant and aims to give permanent support to the weakened organs and to repair damaged tissue.

The mesh implants are meant to be permanent, but Anna started to experience severe pain last April when the mesh cut into her organs, leaving her “unable to live any sort of life anymore.”

“I could feel something sharp inside me,” she said.

“The pain relief tablets were not touching it. I was in agony.

“It’s got to the stage now where 10 minutes is all I can walk, because the pain is excruciating. I have pain in pelvis, groin, hips, back and shooting pains in legs. The level is horrendous. I have to lie down all the time.

“A good day is not being in bed. I just have to lie in the fetal position and not move. Its like a poison. I would rather be wetting myself.”

Anna with husband Gary, daughter Cassie and two sons Toby and Adam



After having to stop work, she now has to receive significant support from her family – including husband Gary and three children Toby, Adam and Cassie.

Her daughter Cassie said: “She was an active, fun-loving person who was always up for a laugh. It is unfair and saddening she cannot enjoy life as normal anymore.”

The vaginal mesh procedure was once commonplace in the UK, with more than 92,000 women receiving one between April 2007 and March 2015 in England alone.

Early trial data suggested the mesh was effective, shorter procedure with less risks compared to a full open-surgery.

Cassie with her mom Anna



But the treatment was “paused” and The Independent Medicines and Medical Devices Safety Review was ordered by the then health secretary, Jeremy Hunt, in 2018 amid mounting safety concerns.

Women told the review team of “excruciating chronic pain feeling like razors inside their body” and felt dismissed when reporting complications including “unacceptable labeling of so many symptoms as ‘normal’ and attributable to ‘women’s problems'”, the report says.

The new review accuses medial professionals of displaying “an institutional and professional resistance” to changing practice. The report concluded that “those harmed are due not only an apology, but better care and support through specialist centres”.

Anna claims doctors never advised her of the complications before fitting the MESH 6 years ago.

Anna is on the NHS waiting list to have the mesh removed, but was told she would likely have to wait at least nine months but it could be up to two years – due to the Covid-19 pandemic causing huge delays.

She was referred to The London Complex Mesh Center (LCMC) – an organization set up in 2021 in response to NHS England’s call for the provision of care for women experiencing complications.

Instead of waiting for the NHS procedure, she is fundraising for private treatment, with costs for the surgery ranging from £16,000 to £23,000.

“I am deteriorating,” she said.

“I’m terrified of how bad it will get. The meshes can damage organs. Having the mesh taken out is a very risky operation and not enough doctors are trained in how to do it.”

One Scottish MP recently backed a Bill to reimburse women waiting for expensive mesh removal surgery.

A spokesperson for Epsom and St Helier hospitals, where Anna was treated, said: “We are sorry to hear Ms Collyer is unhappy with aspects of her care. While undergoing this procedure receive a pre-operative consultation, we would welcome the opportunity to meet Ms Collyer if there is further support we can offer.”

The Trust says they are following national specialist pathways for the treatment of this condition.

You can donate to Anna’s fundraiser here.

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George Holan

George Holan is chief editor at Plainsmen Post and has articles published in many notable publications in the last decade.

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