Default coding for Osteoarthritis

caquay

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Can anyone tell me if there is any literature that tells what the default codes are for osteoarthritis (unspecified, primary, secondary)? I have heard default is primary, I have heard you have to go to unspecified. Can anyone provide me with any proof/literature to support their position?

i.e. For an xray report if the finding was osteoarthritis of the wrist, would you code M19.03- or M19.90? Why?

Thanks in advance!
 

Palmtoptiger

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If you go to the Index > Osteoarthritis > wrist , it will tell you to look for M19.03-

If you check that in the Tabular list M19.03- Primary Osteoarthritis, wrist

M19.031 - Primary Osteoarthritis, right wrist
M19.032 - Primary Osteoarthritis, left wrist
M19.039 - Primary Osteoarthritis, unspecified wrist

I don't have any other documentation for this but just by following the INDEX it will lead you to Primary Osteoarthritis.


M19.90 is used if the documentation did not state the site of osteoarthritis.
 
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phycoder

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osteoartritis primary vs. unspecified

If the provider only documents OSTEOARTHRITIS of (whatever site) do we default to PRIMARY OSTEOARTHRITIS or UNSPECIFIED. I have both from different coders. :confused:
 

mitchellde

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There was a piece in Coding Clinics I believe it was 4th quarter 2016 but it may have been third quarter. it stated that if the provider does not document the type as secondary or post traumatic, we may default to primary.
 
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