Foreign body removal, no incision, modifier 52?

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Hello! This is my first post :)

I have a question regarding 10120 foreign body removal. I am aware that the description of this code includes an incision. My practice has told me that I can code 10120 with a modifier 52 when no incision is made, but there is a foreign body removal. Could someone clarify the use of modifier 52 and if this is appropriate in this situation? Here is the documentation that I'm questioning:

"Left foot: hardened skin with black center. Started washing foot with sure cleanse and gauze; black center washed out and it was a splinter, patient tolerated well."

Thanks in advance.
 

paulcado

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According to the AMA - non-incisional removal of a foreign body from the skin and subcutaneous tissue is considered to be part of the E&M code and is not reported separately.

AMA Dept. of Coding and Nomenclature
 
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Hi Paulcado - thanks for your response! I am aware of that rule, however, I'm wondering when it would be appropriate to use modifier 52 for CPT 10120? And if it is appropriate in the example I gave?
 
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