AAPC - Back to school
Results 1 to 9 of 9

Thread: Extreme lateral approach for discectomy

  1. #1

    Talking Extreme lateral approach for discectomy

    AAPC: Back to School
    I'am trying to find the a cpt code for extreme lateral approach for lumbar discectomy. All I can find is lateral vertebral corpectomy. Can anyone help??

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Apr 2007

    Default Xlif

    22533 arthrodesis, lateral extracavitary technique, including minimal discectomy to prepare interspace; lumbar
    0195t arthrodesis, pre-sacral interbody technique, including instrumentation, imaging (when performed), and discectomy to prepare interspace, lunbar, single interspace

    0171t insertion of posterior spinous process distraction device (including necessary removal of bone or ligament fro insertion and imaging guidance), lumbar: Single level

    hope this helps!

  3. #3


    Without seeing the op report, my opinion is:

    22585 (for add'l interpace)

    and an appropriate graft code (20930, 20937 or 20938)

  4. #4


    Thank you, thank you, thank you!!! Both have helped!!!

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Albuquerque, NM


    Your question did not mention an arthrodesis or instrumentation being done. Was only a discectomy done, or was it done with these other procedures?

  6. #6


    sorry, should have been more specific. It was 2 surgeons. My doctor (neurosurgeon) only did the discectomy. The other dr. (orthopedic) did the arthrodesis. Could I use 22533 with modifier 52 for my dr.?

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Albuquerque, NM


    If your doc did not do the arthrodesis, I would not recommend using that code.
    You might consider 63056--"transpedicular approach with decompression of....nerve root, (eg, herniated disc, single segment; lumbar (including transfacet, or lateral extraformainal approach) (eg, far lateral herniated intervertebral disc)." Does that match what the op note says?
    Then, if your neurosurgeon assisted the orthopedic spine surgeon on the fusion and instrumentation, you can bill his codes as well, using 80 modifier. Call the ortho doc's biller/coder to get their exact codes (both CPT and DX) and match them exactly.
    Since each specialty did his own procedures in this surgery, I do not see them sharing any codes as co-surgeons.

  8. #8


    He didn't assist the ortho Dr. He just did the lateral extracavitry approach (more anterior) for the discectomy. And on the 2 stage surgery he only did the posterior lumbar laminectomy. Never assisted the ortho Dr.

  9. #9


    The lay description of 22533 states:

    The corresponding rib is dissected from the intercostal muscles and resected in one piece from the curve to the costovertebral connection.

    Did the surgeon remove a rib during this procedure?

Similar Threads

  1. Replies: 2
    Last Post: 12-10-2014, 12:26 PM
  2. Extreme lateral interbody fusion
    By KKAMMERER in forum Orthopaedics
    Replies: 1
    Last Post: 11-08-2010, 04:02 PM
  3. Extreme Lateral Interbody Fusion
    By kibbit99 in forum Orthopaedics
    Replies: 6
    Last Post: 07-10-2009, 11:39 AM
  4. Anterior approach for a lumbar discectomy
    By bella2 in forum Outpatient Facilities
    Replies: 4
    Last Post: 01-28-2009, 03:05 PM
  5. Extreme Positioning
    By KFalzone in forum Anesthesia
    Replies: 1
    Last Post: 03-26-2008, 06:55 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.