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Thread: 2011 ICD-9 update - No more SDx designation?

  1. #1

    Default 2011 ICD-9 update - No more SDx designation?

    AAPC: Back to School
    We are doing our 2011 updates - getting ready for the looming 10/1 date - and we noticed that in the Ingenix books, there is no more SDx designation. It is not only gone from all of the codes that used to be designated "secondary only" (V45 series, V28 series), but it is also gone from the "conventions" section at the beginning of the manual, and gone from the bottom of each page. This is huge for our internal edits if these codes can now be used as primary, but we have heard nothing about it in any of the literature or classes. Has anyone heard about this?

    We only have Ingenix books so far. Does anyone have one by another manufacturer they could check?


  2. #2
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Columbia, MO


    The coding guidelines have not changed as far as I am aware but many of the SDX designations in the Ingenix book needed to be updated as some of the codes had changed in their designation so maybe they decided it was better to not have it at all.

    Debra A. Mitchell, MSPH, CPC-H

  3. #3


    Many of those codes designated as SDx previously were not mentioned in the guidelines at all. We had problems when Medicare expected a certain code as primary, but it was designated as Secondary Only. If we go only by the actual guidelines, about 90% of the codes we could not use as primary in 2010 we will be able to use as primary in 2011. We just want to be sure this was intentional.


  4. #4


    I have an Ingenix book, Volumes 1-3 and it has the SDx designations in it. Perhaps a misprint in your book?
    Dawson Ballard, Jr., CPC, CEMC, CPMA, CCS-P, CPC-P
    Compliance Auditor

  5. #5


    I see that in the facility book (volume 1-3). I wonder if the SDx designation only applies to facility coding now, which has always had specific rules about principle diagnosis (and they have always been different than the professional book). It's missing in all of our books (36 books), both professional and expert versions, and it has been changed in the guidelines and the coding conventions sections in the front of the books as well, so it doesn't appear to just be a misprint.


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