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Order of Diagnosis Codes

  1. #1
    Buckeye, Arizona
    Default Order of Diagnosis Codes
    Medical Coding Books
    I work for a physician's office and get confused on the order of dx codes.

    If the patient comes in for knee pain, and is found to have a meniscal tear, what is coded first, the pain or the finding? I thought the reason for the visit was coded first, and findings are coded subsequently.

    Thanks so much for your help.

  2. #2
    you would only code the tear dx because knee pain is a symptom of the tear. You would never "pre-code" an office visit.
    another example is nausea and vomiting and the pt is diagnosed with appendicitis. Then an appy is done. When billing the surgery, you would only list the appendicitis dx code because n/v are symptoms of appendicitis.
    there are guidelines in the icd9 book in the front under section B bullet 6 and 7.
    Teresa Kelley, CPC
    Detroit, MI AAPC Chapter member

  3. #3
    Buckeye, Arizona
    Thank you so much! I know when coding op reports the finding is the primary code, but thought it was the opposite for office visits. My office uses coding software, do you know I where I could find the coding guidelines on Encoder Pro?
    Last edited by ieshiarenee; 10-30-2014 at 01:31 PM.

  4. #4
    I don't work with encoder pro... but if supporting proof is needed it is all in your icd 9 book. If a dr is ordering a knee xray and the dx is knee pain that is fine. I was referencing more in regard to coding op reports in my reply, sorry about that
    Teresa Kelley, CPC
    Detroit, MI AAPC Chapter member

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