Appendix L will help with cardiac codes of any sort - If you see terminology you're not 100% familiar with, it will help you get a better picture of what's going on. Also, some answers will require you to know whether they're talking about the right side of the body or the left, and the maps and illustrations throughout the book come in really handy there.
-I'd tab the one with the body planes (for radiology questions), tab the modifier appendix, and tab anything that will help with cardiac codes, and make sure to write down any medical terminology that you even kind of think you might be unsure of later (Go through the whole glossary in the training book).
-Some of the most helpful definitions were the prefixes for colors (cyano-blue, jaun-yellow, erythro-red - I can't remember them all, but there's a LOT - look online to find as many as you can), and the suffixes, ostomy(create an opening), otomy(surgical incision), and ectomy(surgically remove).
-The section on medical terminology is pretty small, but you really need to know it pretty well throughout the test. The other thing I'd note is a list of common abbreviations for medical conditions. There's one printed inside the back cover of the CPT book, but it's missing a few.
Taking the test itself can be kind of intimidating because of the time factor - the way I dealt with it was to bring a highlighter and some of those tine post-it note flags.
*I'd go through the entire test, and glance at the answers to see what kind of question it was. If it looked like something I could answer relatively quickly (because it was on a subject I was comfortable with, or the answers were short), I'd go ahead and read the question, and answer it if I could.
*If it turned out to be harder than it looked, I'd skip it - I circled the number of every question I skipped, and flagged the page. And I'd fill in the answer sheet for the ones I could answer.
*Once I got through the whole test that way, I went back to the beginning and started over, but this time, reading every question. I'd put the ones that took more thought aside until the very end (I came back to them several times).
*You can usually eliminate 2 answers on most questions pretty easily, based on modifiers, and codes that can't be billed together. My strategy to quickly find the right one was to mark out all of the things that were similar in the anwers, and focus on what made them different. It usually comes down to one or two codes, or a diagnosis.
*Look both options up, and highlight the important words (and, or, includes, excludes, with, numbers mentioned, and approaches for surgical procedures, "code first", "see also", etc.). If there are parenthetical notes, highlight those, too. Those details will give you the answer.
One last thing - become very familiar with critical care codes - read the guidelines before the test and make notes by the codes mentioned. Also, highlight what services are bundled, and which are separately reportable. I remember seeing a lot of questions about that. (Especially with neonates - know the different age groups).
I know that was WAY more than you were asking for, but I remember how much it helped. The only other piece of advice I've got to offer - TAKE THE PRACTICE TESTS if you haven't already, and make sure you fully understand the rationale on the questions you miss. A huge portion of the test consists of questions that are on the practice test (some word for word, the rest are extremely similar). Good luck!
(PS: I'm not trying to be boastful, but I made an A the first time I took it - I give all of the credit to the hints I just told you...)
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