General anaesthetic

Surgery Time

2 Hours




Recovery garments


Hospital stay

1 night


1 week and 2 weeks after discharge

Return to desk-based work

1 week

Return to driving

2-4 weeks

Return to sport

6-8 weeks


Part of your breast cancer treatment may involve removal of lymph nodes under the arm. Unfortunately, one of the side effects of this can be the development of lymphoedema, which affects 1 in 5 women undergoing axillary lymph node surgery. 

LYMPHA is a surgical procedure that aims to reconstruct lymphatic flow from the arm at the same time as lymph node removal to reduce the risk of developing lymphoedema. Using fluorescent imaging techniques, the lymphatic channels that supply your arm are identified in surgery as they drain into the lymph nodes being removed. Once the lymph node dissection is complete, these lymphatic channels are connected to nearby veins, using microsurgical techniques, to restore the flow of lymphatic fluid out of the arm.