Women in Scotland are still being given controversial mesh implants, more than four years after health boards were told to stop offering the procedure.
Hundreds have been left in constant pain after being given the treatment for stress urinary incontinence or pelvic organ prolapse.
Both conditions are common occurrences after childbirth.
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In 2014 then-Health Secretary Alex Neil said the procedure should be suspended pending the outcome of an independent review into the practice.
Prior to this around 1,500 people were being given mesh implants every year.
Some of these hardened, however, and the women affected have been left in constant pain since. Many of them have also been told they will never be able to have sex again.
Despite the Scottish Government orders and the widespread campaign which followed to have the procedure banned, The Press and Journal has obtained figures showing that more than 600 women across six Scottish health boards have had the procedure in recent years.
Numbers taking it up are falling rapidly, however.
In September Mr Neil’s successor, Jeane Freeman, said health boards have been told to “immediately halt” all procedures until new protocols can be put in place.
She added that the use of mesh should only be carried out in the “most limited” circumstances and subject to “rigorous process”.
Stonehaven mum Nikki Lawrence was left in so much pain after having the procedure in 2010 that she had to quit her job.
Last night she said the new figures were “shocking”.
“The mesh procedures are cheaper and quicker than the original operations so that’s why they do it,” she said.
“But it’s shocking there are health boards still putting women in this position.”
All of the health boards in the north-east confirmed they suspended the use of transvaginal mesh implants following the Scottish Government’s advice in 2014.
A spokeswoman for NHS Grampian said: “We halted the use of transvaginal mesh in the 2014/15 following the suspension announced by then Cabinet Secretary Alex Neil. We have not used it since.
“Other types of mesh – eg those inserted abdominally – are still permitted and we continue to use those in line the Chief Medical Officer’s guidance.”