Results 1 to 3 of 3

Complex Foreign Body Removal

  1. Default Complex Foreign Body Removal
    Medical Coding Books
    We had a doctor in our office, workers comp setting, perform exploratory surgery on a hand to remove a foreign body from a patients hand. The surgery was done only after xray showed no clear signs of a foreign body in the hand. Patient continued to state there was a foreign body and he decided to perform the exploratory surgery. After making a 1cm incision he felt for the foreign body, finally locating it he was able to successfully remove a piece of wood 3cm long x 1cm in width. Wound was closed with 1 suture, simple.

    How should this be coded? I have the xray hand series and the E/M figured out, just needing to know how to code the surgery.

  2. Default
    found it myself 20103

  3. #3
    Milwaukee WI
    Default I don't think so
    This is from Encoder Pro
    20103 - Exploration of penetrating wound (separate procedure); extremity
    The physician explores a penetrating wound in the operating room, such as a gunshot or stab wound, to help identify damaged structures. Nerve, organ, and blood vessel integrity is assessed. The wound may be enlarged to help assess the damage. Debridement, removal of foreign bodies, and ligation or coagulation of minor blood vessels in the subcutaneous tissues, fascia, and muscle are also included in this range of codes. Damaged tissues are debrided and repaired when possible. The wound is closed (if clean) or packed open if contaminated by the penetrating body. Report 20100 for exploration of a neck wound. Report 20101 for exploration of a chest wound. Report 20102 for exploration of an abdomen, flank, or back wound. Report 20103 for exploration of a wound to an extremity.

    I do NOT think this is what your physician performed in the office ...

    I think what you want is
    20520 - Removal of foreign body in muscle or tendon sheath; simple
    The physician removes a foreign body in a muscle or tendon sheath. The physician incises the skin and dissects to the muscle or sheath. The foreign body is isolated by palpation or radiographic imagery (separately reported) and removed. The incision may be closed if clean or packed if contaminated by the object. Report 20520 if the removal is simple; report 20525 if the foreign object lies deep or requires a complicated procedure to remove it.

    I do not suggest 20525 because the "wound" was closed with a single simple suture. Of course, reading the entire procedure note might result in a different code.

    Hope that helps.

    F Tessa Bartels, CPC, CEMC

Similar Threads

  1. HELP! Bladder foreign body and complex closure!
    By in forum Urology
    Replies: 3
    Last Post: 06-12-2014, 09:25 AM
  2. S/P foreign body removal
    By kumeena in forum Ophthalmology/Optometry
    Replies: 2
    Last Post: 06-07-2012, 06:57 AM
  3. foreign body removal
    By in forum Medical Coding General Discussion
    Replies: 2
    Last Post: 05-24-2012, 02:50 PM
  4. foreign body removal - E/M or billable
    By ggparker14 in forum Emergency Department
    Replies: 3
    Last Post: 05-16-2012, 07:50 PM
  5. Foreign body removal
    By songbird4700 in forum Gastroenterology
    Replies: 1
    Last Post: 10-14-2010, 06:04 AM

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
Enjoying Our Forums?

AAPC forums are a benefit of membership. Joining AAPC grants you unlimited access, allowing you to post questions and participate with our community of over 150,000 professionals.

Join Now Continue Reading Without Full Access

Already a Member?


Close Message

In addition to full participation on AAPC forums, as a member you will be able to:

  • Access to the largest healthcare job database in the world.
  • Join over 150,000 members of the healthcare network in the world.
  • Be a part of an industry leading organization that drives the business side of healthcare.
  • Save anywhere from 10%-50% with exclusive member discounts on courses, books, study materials, and conferences.
  • Access to discounts at hundreds of restaurants, travel destinations, retail stores, and service providers. AAPC members also have opportunities to save on heath, life, and liability insurance.
  • Become a member of a local chapter and attend regular meetings.