Tension Free Tape/Sling Surgery for Stress Incontinence

  • I had tension free tape/sling surgery 9 months ago for stress incontinence. I was problem free for almost 8 months. I recently started experiencing episodes of stress incontinence and resumed frequency of urination. I tested negative for Urinary tract infection. Is it possible that even after 8 months of being "dry", the tape may have failed?

    This is a very tricky and difficult question to answer. First of all, no procedure is ever 100%, in any field. After reviewing the current literature in medical journals, success of the TVT is reported to be anywhere from 66-92%. There are many compounding factors that may be related to success or failure. Some of the patient characteristics that may cause early failure are being overweight, post-menopausal without estrogen replacement, previous incontinence surgery, and intrinsic sphincter deficiency to name a few common situations. It is possible that the stress incontinence has returned. It is very important to see the physician that did you initial procedure and discuss your symptoms with him or her. It is possible that the procedure did not work and you may need another work-up.
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    For some women, after having an anti-incontinence procedure, they develop another kind of incontinence, called motor urge incontinence. Sometimes the bladder doesn’t respond well to having to work again, and store more urine, after being used to leaking prior to the TVT. After being appropriately evaluated by your physician, you may be a candidate for some bladder medications. Again, it is extremely important to discuss your concerns with your physician since there may be a couple issues going on. Additionally, it’s always a good idea to seek a second opinion from another urologist if you would like.

    Important: We hope you find this general medical and health information useful, but this Q&A is meant to support not replace the professional medical advice you receive from your doctor. For all personal medical and health matters, including decisions about diagnoses, medications and other treatment options, you should always consult your doctor. See full Disclaimer.
Published On: October 17, 2006