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Thread: Cancer vs history of cancer

  1. #1

    Default Cancer vs history of cancer

    AAPC: Back to School
    A patient came in who had breast cancer. She has had surgery and chemotherapy. She is now on medication cocktail for 5 years. Would she still be considered as having breast cancer or would it be a history of breat cancer?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Mesa, AZ


    Hx of breast cancer. This is based on the Chapter Specific Coding Guidelines in the front of the ICD-9 book, Chapter 2, Neoplasms. See d & e for more detail.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Columbia, MO


    If the medication is still directed at treating cancer cells then it is still active cancer.

    Debra A. Mitchell, MSPH, CPC-H

  4. #4


    I agree that if it is being actively treated, it should be coded as cancer, not hx of.

  5. #5


    Are there any time frame guidelines outside of those listed in the front of the ICD-9 book that anyone has seen or uses? The question is does a patient go (due to med or Tx status) from active to history overnight or is there a "transition" period say three months or six months? Thanks.

  6. #6

    Default cancer current vs h/o

    The icd 9 guidelines states that when a primary malignancy has been previously excised or eradicated from its site AND THERE IS NO FURTHER TREATMENT directed to the site, it is personal history. In this case, since there is continued drug therapy being directed towards the breast cancer, it meets the definition to continue to code it as current.

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