AAPC - Back to school
Results 1 to 3 of 3

Thread: Pleural scarification vs. pleurodesis

  1. #1

    Default Pleural scarification vs. pleurodesis

    AAPC: Back to School
    Can someone explain the difference between codes 32215 and 32560? In both cases, the surgeon is injecting a chemical into the chest cavity for repeat pneumothorax.


    Lisi, CPC

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Apr 2007


    That is an excellent question.

    In looking at my CVT coding companion, the coding tip under 32560 is

    "For treatment of pneumothorax with thoracentesis with insertion of a tube, with or without a water seal, see 32422. for pleural scarification by other methods, see 32215. for thoracoscopy with pleurodesis, see 32650"

    The coding tip under 32215 is

    "To report chemical pleurodesis for recurrent or persistent pneumothorax, see 32560. Supplies used when providing this procedure may be reported with A7042. Check with the specific payer to determine coverage."

    My take on the two is that 32560 is when they get the surface of the lung to adhere to the inside surface of the chest cavity. 32215 is when they just create adhesive scar tissue between the lung and chest cavity, not a complete adhesion of the two surfaces.

    Again, that is just my opinion and if that is wrong I hope someone posts the correct answer.

    Laura, CPC

  3. #3


    Thanks Laura, you may be onto something. My only thing with what you said is that the RVUs for 32215 are much higher than 32560 (21 vs 3) and in your explanation, I feel like code 32560 sounds like the more difficult procedure (therefore its RVUs should be higher).

    I do like your explanation though. I will f/u with my surgeons and see what they think.

    Of course, if anyone else has anything to add, I would appreciate it!


Similar Threads

  1. VATS w/pleurodesis with talc
    By nyyankees in forum Cardiovascular Thoracic
    Replies: 4
    Last Post: 06-25-2014, 04:45 AM
  2. need help on coding scarification of rotator
    By j-fowler57 in forum Orthopaedics
    Replies: 3
    Last Post: 10-10-2012, 07:08 AM
  3. Thoracotomy with pleurodesis?
    By mhanson1 in forum Cardiovascular Thoracic
    Replies: 0
    Last Post: 06-24-2011, 11:57 AM
  4. Pleurodesis open?
    By darlene0208 in forum Cardiovascular Thoracic
    Replies: 2
    Last Post: 03-05-2010, 10:45 AM
  5. Pleurodesis
    By prabha in forum Interventional Radiology
    Replies: 6
    Last Post: 05-22-2009, 05:20 AM

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts

Enjoying Our Forums?

AAPC forums are a benefit of membership. Joining AAPC grants you unlimited access, allowing you to post questions and participate with our community of over 150,000 professionals.

Join Now Continue Reading Without Full Access

Already a Member?


Close Message

In addition to full participation on AAPC forums, as a member you will be able to:

  • Access to the largest healthcare job database in the world.
  • Join over 150,000 members of the healthcare network in the world.
  • Be a part of an industry leading organization that drives the business side of healthcare.
  • Save anywhere from 10%-50% with exclusive member discounts on courses, books, study materials, and conferences.
  • Access to discounts at hundreds of restaurants, travel destinations, retail stores, and service providers. AAPC members also have opportunities to save on heath, life, and liability insurance.
  • Become a member of a local chapter and attend regular meetings.