Lay description: The physician takes a split-thickness skin autograft from one area of the body and grafts it to an area needing repair. This procedure is performed when direct wound closure or adjacent tissue transfer is not possible. The physician harvests a split-thickness skin graft with a dermatome. The epidermis or top layer of skin is taken, along with a small portion of the dermis or bottom layer of the skin. This graft is sutured or stapled onto the recipient area on the face, scalp, eyelids, neck, ears, orbits, mouth, genitalia, hands, feet, and/or multiple digits. Report 15120 for the first 100 sq cm or less in adults or children age 10 or over or 1 percent of the total body area of infants and children younger than age 10. Report 15121 for each additional 100 sq cm and each additional 1 percent of total body area of infants and children.
Preparing the recipient site is separately reportable per the guidelines. Repair of the donor site requiring a skin graft or local flaps is to be added per the guidelines.
F Tessa Bartels, CPC, CEMC
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