The Evolving Story of Mesh Mid Urethral Slings: The Surgeon's Perspective

Wai Lee, Pansy Uberoi, Alvaro Lucioni, Kathleen C. Kobashi, Donna L. Berry, Una J. Lee

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


Purpose: The objective of this study was to obtain the perspectives of surgeons who treat female stress urinary incontinence (SUI) and better understand their range of experiences with mesh mid urethral sling (MUS) surgery. Materials and Methods: This qualitative study recruited gynecologic and urological surgeons who treat SUI. Surgeons were interviewed by phone and in person using a standardized interview guide. Interviews were transcribed, deidentified, and analyzed by 2 independent researchers. The transcripts were coded and summarized using the principles of thematic analysis. The research team came to consensus that a saturation of ideas representing a diverse demographic of surgeons had been achieved. Results: Twenty-four interviews of surgeons from diverse geographic locations and practice types were performed. Many surgeons described MUS surgery as rewarding and favorably impactful for women with SUI, while others grappled with the serious risks associated with MUS surgery. Those who had treated women with life-altering pain after MUS recounted impactful patient stories. Many stated that recognition, acknowledgement, and appropriate referral of complications were fundamental to responsible and ethical care. Some surgeons expressed frustration and concern about the raised level of controversy and anxiety regarding the MUS landscape. All participants expressed that there was substantial room for improvement in multiple domains. Participants also shared their optimal strategies relevant to MUS surgery. Conclusions: Despite diverse views regarding the role of the MUS, there was agreement among surgeons that the surgeon-patient relationship, thorough informed consent and patient counseling, and accountability are essential when implanting MUSs.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)407-416
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of Urology
Issue number2
StatePublished - Feb 1 2022


  • Midurethral slings
  • Qualitative research
  • Surgeons
  • Surgical mesh
  • Urinary incontinence, stress

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Urology


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