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HTN Coding 401.0-401.1 or 401.9

  1. Question HTN Coding 401.0-401.1 or 401.9
    Medical Coding Books
    Need help:

    When you look in the ICD-9-CM book under
    401 (Essential Hypertension) it gives you a 4th digit code is required, .0 malignant (Severe high blood pressure; results in necrosis kidney retina; etc or .1 benign (mildly high blood pressure) and .9 (Unspecified ) when would 401.1 Benign hypertension be used over 401.9 Hypertension unspecified?

    I know with ICD-10 this will all change

  2. Default
    The provider will actively state "Benign Hypertension" in his/her note. Otherwise, just use 401.9

  3. Default
    I work for a hospital, so the physicians will state "Benign Essential Hypertension" or "Accelerated Hypertension". If they simply state "hypertension" we just use 401.9

    Cordelia, DRG Auditor, CCS, CPC

  4. Default
    My understanding is that Accelerated Hypertension codes to 401.0 (malignant), per the icd9 book.

    there is a past post here also that refers to this, I just searched accelerated hypertension.

    Also doing a google search the definition states that accelerated hypertension is also known as malignant.

    This is something that has confused me also.

  5. #5
    Columbia, MO
    Isnt it nice that once ICD-10 is implemented this will no longer be an issue!

    Debra A. Mitchell, MSPH, CPC-H

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