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  1. ITV Report

Is victory in sight for Cambridgeshire's Sling the Mesh campaigner?

A mother from Cambridgeshire - who has campaigned for two years against a medical procedure that has left thousands of women in crippling pain - appears to have won a major victory.

The National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (Nice) is due to issue new guidance on the use of controversial vaginal mesh implants next month.

But a draft report seen by the BBC's Victoria Derbyshire show suggests the watchdog will recommend the devices should no longer be used.

It would mark the end of a long battle for Wisbech journalist Kath Sansom, who began her Sling the Mesh campaign in 2015.

She had the procedure to treat incontinence after childbirth - but was left in debilitating pain. She soon found out many other women were in the same situation.

"I had terrible pain in my groin and in my legs. Sometimes it fells like there's knives cutting into me. It rang alarm bells because I knew you should be over it quite quickly. You're told it was this very easy operation."

– Kath Sansom, Sling the Mesh
Thousands of woman have the procedure each year. Credit: ITV News Anglia.

A spokesman for Nice said its guidance would be published on December 20 and the watchdog would not comment until then.

Even if the watchdog does decide the mesh should not be used, its recommendations are not mandatory.

If officials wanted to ban the use of the implants it would also take action from the Department of Health and the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA).

Kath's campaign reached Westminster last month, when ministers faced fresh calls for a public inquiry into the implants - which have been offered to women to treat pelvic organ prolapse and incontinence after childbirth.