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Thread: Has anyone had the TVT procedure done?

  1. #1

    Join Date
    Jul 2004
    House of the crazy cat ladies...

    Default Has anyone had the TVT procedure done?

    My friend has asked me to find out some info on here if I can about the TVT procedure.

    I think its a procedure for urinary incontinence, and as she has been through 2 really rough labours which have cause some damage, her urologist is recommending she have this procedure done.

    Is there anyone here that has had the procedure done, or knows someone that has, and knows any other info about it that they can share?

  2. #2

    Join Date
    Apr 2005


    I found this on an American website. I assume it's fairly similar to what might happen in Australia. It does mentiont that it's not recommended for women who are planning on having future pregnancies, so that may be something for your friend to think about.

    TVT, trans-vaginal tape, is a minimally invasive surgical procedure for definitive treatment of female stress incontinence that combines the use of a safe material, polypropylene mesh tape, with a traditional incontinence procedure called the sling to support the urethra. The mesh tape loosely supports the middle of the urethra and provides support only when needed, without the tension (“tension –free”) associated with traditional sling procedure. It creates a “new” hammock for the urethra.

    The surgery takes only 30 to 45 minutes and it can be performed under sedation with local anesthesia, though many surgeons may prefer the use of regional (epidural) or general anesthesia.

    The tape is surgically inserted through a small incision in the vagina and then it is woven through pelvic tissue and positioned underneath the urethra. The tape is then pulled up through two tiny incisions in the skin’s surface just above the pubic area. As it passes through several pelvic tissue layers, friction is created which initially holds the tape in place (like velcro). Over time your body tissue grows into the mesh which permanently secures it. The surgeon will evaluate whether the tape is providing adequate support by asking you to cough and any necessary adjustments can be made right then and there. At the end of the procedure the tape is trimmed just under the skin’s surface and the tiny incisions closed. All you will see are two adhesive bandages.

    Am I a candidate for TVT?

    The TVT procedure is appropriate for most all patients including overweight patients, elderly patients and even those who have gone through previous operations for stress urinary incontinence. As with any surgery of this kind, this procedure should not be performed on pregnant women. Also, because the mesh-like tape will not stretch significantly, it should not be considered by women who plan a future pregnancy. Only a complete physical examination and consult with your physician can determine if it is right for you.

    What does recovery involve?

    After the surgery you may be able to go home as early a few hours after the procedure or you will stay in the hospital for one night. Many patients return to normal daily living activities within 2-5 days. Most women recover completely within a two to three week period. During this time there should be very little interference with daily activities, although you will have to avoid heavy lifting, strenuous exercise and sexual intercourse for four to six weeks.

    What is the success rate?

    The TVT procedure has been proven to effectively treat stress urinary incontinence. In fact, 85% of women treated in clinical trials remained completely dry, while another 11% experienced significant improvement. Furthermore, the surgery appears to “last” as demonstrated by studies that have followed patients for five years.

    What are the risks?

    All surgical procedures present some risks. Although rare, complications associated with the procedure include injury to blood vessels of the pelvic sidewall and abdominal wall, nerve damage, difficulty urinating and bladder and bowel injury.

    A Patient’s Perspective

    In the past, many women accepted stress urinary incontinence as an inevitable part or the aging process. Today’s women have a different outlook on life than their parents and grandparents. They are unwilling to accept limitations on their health and are demanding convenient treatments with high success rates.

    When a recent patient came into my office for a visit following her TVT procedure, I asked her how she was feeling. She exuberantly responded, “Wonderful! I am completely dry and I am doing things I have not done in years. I have a new lease on life.” I have come to expect this marked enthusiasm and optimism for patients who undergo a TVT repair. Most every woman comments, “I wish I had done it sooner.”

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