Wiki 88331

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88331-88332 (88331, 88332)

These procedures may also be referred to as an intraoperative pathology exam with frozen section (FS). A pathology consultation involves an opinion or advice on the presence or absence of diseased or abnormal tissue provided at the request of another physician. These codes describe such a pathology consultation during the course of a surgery. The codes include a gross examination of tissue and frozen sections, including a written interpretation of findings. The specimen is immediately frozen in a cold liquid or cold environment (-20 to -70 C) to facilitate sectioning with a microtome. The specimen is sectioned using a cryostat, which is a refrigerated box containing a microtome. Once sectioned, the tissues are placed on a slide, stained, and examined microscopically. Report 88331 for examination of a single block of tissue. Report 88332 for each additional block of tissue from the same specimen. Intraoperative consultations are performed to assist the surgeon in determining immediate surgical course.

My question is on billing the 88331. I have a MOHS surgeon who also does regular dermatology. If he suspects a cancer on a pt instead of doing a bx and send path out, he will do a bx and do fresh frozen to comfirm dx. If the pt isn't referred by another physician can I code 88331? There is a debate in my office on what I can code. Some say I should code 88305 not 88331. Everything about the 88331 is true except the pt may not have been referred by another physician.:eek:
Mohs surgeons cannot bill certain pathology services like 88331/ 88305 in conjunction with Mohs codes (CPT codes 17311 to 17315) unless the pathology is performed on a lesion unrelated to the Mohs or represents a biopsy performed to verify the diagnosis or if additional special pathology procedures, stains, or immunostains are required. you can certainly bill 88331 in my openion.
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