International Urogynecology Journal

, Volume 24, Issue 8, pp 1265–1269 | Cite as

Seventeen years’ follow-up of the tension-free vaginal tape procedure for female stress urinary incontinence

  • C. G. NilssonEmail author
  • K. Palva
  • R. Aarnio
  • E. Morcos
  • C. Falconer
Original Article: Editors’ Choice


Introduction and hypothesis

The minimally invasive tension-free vaginal tape (TVT) operation has become the “gold standard” of incontinence surgery. The aim of the present study was to evaluate the long-term effect of the tape material and to assess the continence status 17 years after surgery


A cohort of 90 women operated upon with the TVT procedure at three Nordic centers has been prospectively followed for 17 years. All of the women alive according to national registries were contacted and invited to visit the clinics for evaluation. Pelvic examination was performed to reveal any adverse effects of the tape material. Objective and subjective continence status were assessed by a cough stress test and the patients’ global impression of improvement as well as by condition-specific quality of life questionnaires.


Seventy-eight percent of the potentially assessable women were evaluated either by a clinic visit or by a telephone interview. One case of a minimal, symptom-free tape extrusion was seen. No other tape complications occurred. Over 90 % of the women were objectively continent. Eighty-seven per cent were subjectively cured or significantly improved.


The TVT operation is durable for 17 years, with a high satisfaction rate and no serious long-term tape-induced adverse effects


Tension-free vaginal tape Stress urinary incontinence Long term follow-up 



The study was instigated by the researchers responsible and funded by University-administered funds.

Conflicts of interest

CGN and CF have acted as consultants for Astellas, Ethicon, and Pfizer.


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Copyright information

© The International Urogynecological Association 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  • C. G. Nilsson
    • 1
    Email author
  • K. Palva
    • 1
  • R. Aarnio
    • 2
  • E. Morcos
    • 3
  • C. Falconer
    • 3
  1. 1.Department of Obstetrics and GynecologyHelsinki University Central HospitalHelsinkiFinland
  2. 2.Uppsala University HospitalUppsalaSweden
  3. 3.Danderyd HospitalKarolinska InstitutetStockholmSweden

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