Clinical Application of a Transurethral Holmium Laser Excision of Exposed Polypropylene Mesh at Lower Urinary Tract: Single Surgeon Experience With Long-term Follow-up

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Abstract

Purpose

The aim of this study was to evaluate the clinical application of a transurethral holmium laser excision of exposed polypropylene mesh as an effective minimally invasive surgical approach in patients with lower urinary tract mesh erosion following the transvaginal placement of polypropylene mesh.

Methods

A retrospective analysis was conducted on the data of 22 patients with exposed polypropylene mesh in the lower urinary tract that was managed using the transurethral holmium laser technique. The patients were divided into 2 groups based on the type of mesh surgery: a midurethral sling (MUS) group (n = 18) and a pelvic organ prolapse (POP) group (n = 4). The surgical outcomes were compared.

Results

The mean time follow-up after the first surgery was 23.2 months, and 14 patients (64%) reported symptomatic improvement. During outpatient follow-up, eroded residual mesh and failed re-epithelialization were discovered in 6 patients. The recurrence rates in the MUS and POP groups after the first surgery were 22% and 50%, respectively. The recurrence-free periods of each group were 30.5 versus 13.5 months, respectively. Whereas 5 patients had successful epithelialization of the surgical wound following the second endoscopic surgery, 1 patient in the POP group required a third endoscopic surgery because of persistent mesh erosion.

Conclusions

The excision of exposed polypropylene mesh using a transurethral holmium laser following MUS appears to be a feasible option because of potentially low rates of complication and recurrent stress incontinence. However, minimally invasive approach using holmium laser may not be as successful for mesh erosion after transvaginal mesh repair for POP.

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