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Thread: Elevated Liver function test

  1. #1

    Default Elevated Liver function test

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    Just curious. When lab values are abnormal for a liver function test, which diagnosis is appropriate to use? 790.6 or 794.8? Thanks

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Kokomo, IN


    You will get many different answers to this, but I personally use 790.6. Here's what Faye Brown has to say:

    Comments: The diagnostic statement represents a symptom followed by contrasting/comparative diagnoses (Section II[E]). The symptom is coded and sequenced first, followed by codes for the contrasting/comparative diagnoses. Code 790.6, Other abnormal blood chemistry, should be assigned for the abnormal liver function. It can be located in the index by looking up Findings, abnormal, liver function test. Code 794.8, Nonspecific abnormal results of function studies, liver, is not appropriate because it is intended for other types of tests (such as a liver scan) and not for blood tests for assessing liver function.
    Anna Weaver, CPC, CPMA, CEMC
    Associate Auditor

  3. #3


    The primary posting is for elevated liver enzyme(function) tests.
    This term actually could refer to any one of a number of conditions, and does not necessarily indicate any specific disease.

    Alanine transaminase, Aspartate transaminase (AST) Alkaline phosphatase, Lactate dehydrogenase (LDH) are the elevated Liver enzymes, indicating the liver is getting into damage. The transaminases group are the most commonest which are looked for as indicators of liver damage.

    The most ideal and with more specificity would be ICD code is 790.4 and/790.5 as they depict the elevated liver enzyme status . The code 790.6 talks more of the metallic levels and minerals level which are not the indicators of liver damage.
    It does not say about enzyme levels, where as, at least the codes 790.4 and 790.5 are dealing with elevated enzyme levels AST ALT LDH , alkaline phosphatase Phosphatase and pancreatic enzymes amylase and lipase.
    I understand why you code the 790.6 because in the index 790.6 is given for LFT.
    i feel some gray area in coding so.
    elevated Liver enzymes are very important not only for Liver damage ,they are important to indicate other conditions like HELLP SYNDROME,infectious mononucleosis, fatty degenerations, certain medications, some coagulopathies, Liver and biliary dysfunctions and so on.
    So the ELEVATED LIVER ENZYME STATUS is important hall mark for a variety of conditions think it need some more specification in diagnoses coding placement.

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