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Pathology code 88342

  1. #1
    Everett, WA
    Smile Pathology code 88342
    Medical Coding Books
    The CPT book states that this code is per stain (to report once for each antibody used), does anyone know if it is also charged by specimen? If I am testing 4 specimens and doing 4 stains on each, can I charge 16 88342's? It may sound silly, but it doesn't say anywhere that I can't or that I am not supposed to charge per specimen also.

    Thanks for your help!

    Last edited by daizyluvr; 06-12-2008 at 05:04 PM.

  2. #2
    Everett, WA
    Talking Found my own answer...
    I was checking the College of American Pathologists' website and found the answer to the question. I am posting it in case anyone else is interested in the answer. Thank you!

    Q: I noticed that sentinel lymph node is listed under the 88307 family in the CPT 2001 book. If I receive two separately identified lymph nodes, each designated as a “sentinel” node, can I bill for two units of service? Also, if I receive a sentinel node in conjunction with a mastectomy and/or regional lymph node resection, can I bill for it separately?

    A: Code 88307, Sentinel Lymph Node, is used for sentinel lymph node protocol related to isotopic identification of a sentinel node. When you receive sentinel nodes that are separately identified, then each should be coded separately. If you receive a separately identified sentinel lymph node in conjunction with a mastectomy and/or regional lymph node resection, the sentinel node should be coded separately. Please also note that sentinel lymph node was accidentally omitted from the 88307 family in the CPT 2001 pathology and laboratory mini edition. However, it is listed in the CPT 2001 main edition.

    If immunohistochemistry is required to evaluate a sentinel node, code 88342, Immunocytochemistry (including tissue immunoperoxidase), each antibody, is appropriate in addition to 88307. Code 88342 is reported once per antibody, per specimen.

    http://www.cap.org Taken directly from the website at:

  3. Default 88342
    I was reviewing the forum on this code, 88342. It is an ongoing debate as to whether or not we (hospital) can bill for this. We never have in the past, but I can find nothing to say we can't. The Pathologist bills for it, can the facility bill as well? Our Pathologist has his own billing company.

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