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Thread: Help w/Colles Fracture closed reduction external fixator

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Apr 2007

    Question Help w/Colles Fracture closed reduction external fixator

    AAPC: Back to School
    I'm brand new to coding surgeries and have been finding a lot of info on the web to help with some of my questions but I'm stuck on fracture procedures. This is an example of three I have to code.

    INDICATIONS FOR OPERATION: The patient suffered a fall, coming down hard on her right upper extremity. She had marked shortening of her right distal radius and dorsal displacement consistent with Colles fracture without significant intraarticular involvement noted on pre-reduction films.

    PROCEDURE: The patient was given a general anesthetic. The right upper extremity was prepped and draped in the usual manner. A 1-inch incision was made over the dorsum of the distal right radius. A second incision was made over the dorsum of the second metacarpal. Two pins were placed in the distal radius and 2 pins were placed in the second metacarpal. The fracture was reduced, and the external fixator tube was applied. X-rays revealed excellent fracture reduction with restoration of the length of the radius. The wounds were closed with running 4-0 nylon sutures. A dry sterile dressing was applied. The patient returned to recovery room in good condition having suffered no operative complications.

    OPERATION: Closed reduction of right Colles fracture with application of external fixator, Orthofix brand. The patient will be discharged home.

    The codes I'm coming up with are 25605 w/20690 or 25606
    Any help would be greatly appreciated.
    Last edited by pnwcoder; 05-24-2011 at 09:12 AM.

  2. #2


    In just glancing through this rather quickly, I am reading the op note as a CRPP (closed reduction and percutaneous pin fixation) of the radius with external fixator placement. I would code 25606 for the CRPP and 20690 for the external fixator.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Apr 2007


    Thank you, thank you very much for your response. I thought that those were the correct codes but the description of 25606 seemed more involved than what he did but then again the other didn't seem like enough. Can't wait till I know what I'm doing

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