december 2016

Fine Tuning your Coding in 2017

Gone are the days when we had straightforward CPT code definitions and standard implants that would assist us in accurately reporting CPT codes and welcome to the era where you not only have to be knowledgeable about anatomy and terminology but also have an understanding of the new surgical techniques and types of devices being implanted.

For starters, when you look at the repair of hallux valgus codes you will notice that the “Legacy” names which you have been familiar with such as Akin, Austin, Mitchell and Lapidus have been removed and more generic terms are being used in the CPT code definitions because there are numerous techniques in which these types of bone osteotomies can be performed. The revised definition of CPT code 28292 includes the Silver (28290) and Keller (28292) – but what you won’t find is a description for the old Modifier McBride (distal soft tissue release) in the 2017 code set.

CPT code 22851 for placement of biomechanical devices has been deleted and replaced with 3 new CPT codes. The definition of these codes includes those types of devices that use screws or flanges to secure the cage in place which are known as integrated, low profile or zero profile cages. The reason you need to identify these types of devices is because they do not require supplemental fixation (separate plate and screws), therefore you cannot additionally report 22845 anterior instrumentation when these cages are implanted.

There are also 4 new CPT codes that represent insertion of interlaminar/interspinous process stabilization/distraction devices. Dynesys is an example of an interlaminar stabilization device while X-Stop and CoFlex are examples of interspinous process distraction devices. Do not confuse these devices with Aspen or Inspan which are spinous process plates/clamps that are still reported with an unlisted CPT code when used in arthrodesis procedures.

Join us for this months webinar where we will not only discuss the new and revised code but include valuable information on how these CPT codes should be reported.


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