To identify potential technical factors during initial mid-urethral sling (MUS) placement that contribute to subsequent sling revision procedures.
A retrospective chart review was performed examining synthetic MUS reoperations at a single institution from 2008-2020. The implanting surgeon’s operative note, when available, was critically reviewed with respect to trocar placement, sling location, and tensioning technique. The reoperative report was reviewed for aberrant intraoperative findings relating to the index surgery.
306 women underwent revision of their MUS. Operative reports from the implanting surgeon were available for 276 (90.2%) women. Review of index operative reports revealed 47 unambiguous descriptions of improper technique, including 19 cases of described excessive tensioning and 2 cases of MUS placement despite noted urethral injury during the index case. Indications for reoperation were clinical obstruction (63%), pain (40%), and mesh erosion/exposure (33%). In 186 (67.4%) women, there was an intraoperative finding during the revision that likely contributed to the need for reoperation. Among these 186 women, 110 (59.1%) slings were noted to have been placed too proximally, 78 (41.9%) were over-suspended, and 57 (30.6%) were placed too deep in the periurethral fascia.
Review of the index operative note and findings at operative re-exploration of MUS surgeries, often reveals evidence that the initial MUS implantation was technically suboptimal. Such findings suggest that intraoperative surgical technique is a critically important factor contributing to postoperative complications in MUS surgery. This underscores the importance of surgical training and adherence to surgical principles during the placement of a synthetic MUS.

Copyright © 2021. Published by Elsevier Inc.