Code 303.0x, Alcohol dependence syndrome, acute alcoholic intoxication, is assigned when a patient who is dependent on alcohol presents for care in a state of acute intoxication.
The doc must specifically state alcohol dependence in order to code it, otherwise alcohol intoxication is coded to Alcohol abuse and is classified as code 305.0x, Alcohol abuse. This code is also assigned for a diagnosis of simple drunkenness.
Alcohol abuse represents problem drinking and includes those patients who drink to excess but have not reached a stage of physical dependence on alcohol. It may include such alcohol-related conditions as temporary mental disturbance, slurred speech, blackouts, difficulty in driving, arguments with family and friends, and difficulty in the work environment. Alcohol abuse is classified as code 305.0x, Alcohol abuse. This code is also assigned for a diagnosis of simple drunkenness.
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