Question Coding Normal Side Effects of Drugs

tlpowles

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What's the ICD-10-CM guideline for coding normal/expected side effects of drugs (e.g. nausea and vomiting)?
 

thomas7331

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See the Chapter 19 guidelines, e. 5 (a):
When coding an adverse effect of a drug that has been correctly prescribed and properly administered, assign the appropriate code for the nature of the adverse effect followed by the appropriate code for the adverse effect of the drug (T36-T50).
 

tlpowles

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Thank you. I guess I should have worded my question differently.....are the same codes used for 'side effects' (less severe, normal and possibly expected) and 'adverse effects' (more severe, possibly life threatening)? T36-T50?
 

tlpowles

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Are the same codes used for 'side effects' (less severe, normal and possibly expected) and 'adverse effects' (more severe, possibly life threatening)? T36-T50? These codes are really making our ADEs go up, when they are really just side effects.
 

thomas7331

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Thank you. I guess I should have worded my question differently.....are the same codes used for 'side effects' (less severe, normal and possibly expected) and 'adverse effects' (more severe, possibly life threatening)? T36-T50?
From a coding perspective, there isn't a difference between the two. If the side effect, or adverse effect, of a drug is a reportable diagnosis (i.e. is documented as a condition for which the patient seeks treatment or which requires evaluation or affects a provider's treatment of the patient at the encounter), then it would be reported the same way. Whether it is more or less severe, or if it is 'normal' or expected or unexpected, it is still reported as an adverse effect if it meets the criteria for reporting.
 
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