The FDA reports in 2010 approximately 300,000 women in the US underwent surgical procedures to repair POP and approximately 260,000 underwent surgical procedures to repair SUI. According to industry estimates, approximately 25% of transvaginal POP surgeries and 80% transvaginal SUI surgeries were done with mesh. This data indicates that approximately 283,000 US women annually are implanted with mesh through the vagina.
If these figures were fairly constant throughout the last 15 years, more than four million women in the US were implanted with vaginal mesh. With a cost range of approximately $10,000-$15,000 per procedure, the expenses borne by the US economy due to vaginal mesh implants are estimated to be $42 billion to $63 billion; despite the finding that there is no clinical benefit from the procedure. These costs are mainly borne by taxpayers through Medicare/Medicaid reimbursements and by private insurance companies. With an estimated one in five women (or 31.7 million) expected to undergo a procedure to repair pelvic organ prolapse by the age of 80, vaginal mesh costs will increase exponentially.
While many women who have transvaginal mesh procedures do not encounter post-surgical complications, there remains an astounding 10-30% who experience a range of debilitating and chronic problems. Such a failure rate means between 400,000 and over one million women have had unsuccessful procedures, and that between 3.2 and 9.5 million women will likely face complications and require surgery to remove the mesh. This risk ratio is medically unacceptable by the U.S. medical ethics standards.