Complications of Pelvic Organ Prolapse Surgery in the 2015 Finnish Pelvic Organ Prolapse Surgery Survey Study

Olga Wihersaari, Päivi Karjalainen, Anna Maija Tolppanen, Nina Mattsson, Jyrki Jalkanen, Kari Nieminen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review


OBJECTIVE: To describe the major complications of pelvic organ prolapse (POP) surgery in Finland. METHODS: The Finnish Pelvic Organ Prolapse Surgery Survey 2015 study is a prospective cohort of POP surgeries performed in Finland in 2015. Perioperative, postoperative, and late complications during 1 year of follow-up were compared among native tissue repair, transvaginal mesh, and abdominal mesh surgery. Major complications were assessed using the Clavien-Dindo grading system. Predictive factors for major complications were studied with logistic regression analysis. RESULTS: Within 1 year after POP surgery, 396 (11.2%) of 3,515 women had at least one complication: 10.9% after native tissue, 11.7% after transvaginal mesh, and 13.5% after abdominal mesh repair. The majority of complications occurred within 2 months after surgery and postoperative infection (4.3%) and bleeding or hematoma (2.6%) were the most frequent. The incidence of organ injuries was low. Mesh-augmented surgery was associated with significantly higher rates of bladder and bowel injuries than native tissue surgery. Complication-related reoperations occurred significantly more often after abdominal mesh repair than native tissue surgery (5.2% vs 1.8%, P=.001). Mesh-related complications were diagnosed more often after transvaginal mesh repair. The overall rate of major complications (Clavien-Dindo grades III-V) was 3.3%. Abdominal mesh surgery was associated with the highest rate of major adverse events (8.8% vs native tissue repair 2.6% and transvaginal mesh 4.9%). The incidence of Clavien-Dindo grade IV or V complications was rare (less than 0.6%). Mesh surgery (transvaginal mesh adjusted odds ratio [aOR] 2.23, 95% CI 1.31-3.80, and abdominal mesh aOR 3.02, 95% CI 1.67-5.46), longer operating time (aOR 2.84, 95% CI 1.78-4.53), prior POP surgery (aOR 1.68, 95% CI 1.00-2.81) and difficult surgery (aOR 2.75, 95% CI 1.63-4.62) were associated with an increased risk for occurrence of major complications. CONCLUSION: Serious adverse events were rare regardless of the operative approach. However, mesh-augmented surgery was associated with higher risk for major complications.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1135-1144
Number of pages10
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - 1 Dec 2020
Publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed

Publication forum classification

  • Publication forum level 3

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Obstetrics and Gynaecology


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