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Thread: Help with acl debridement

  1. #1

    Post Help with acl debridement

    AAPC: Back to School
    Procedures performed were a

    lateral menisectomy
    synovectomy in all 3 compartments
    chondroplasty in all 3 compartments
    debridement of acl for complete acl tear

    so far i have this as 29881 and 29876-59 but not sure about the acl debridement and what to code for it or is it included in the chondroplasty wich is bundled with the synovectomy? Any help will be greatly appreciated.

  2. #2


    First the chrondroplasty is billable depending on the insurance. Most insurance companies are accepting G0289 instead of 29877.

    If you can put the op notes on here, then I can help with the rest.

    Thank you,

  3. #3


    I am having trouble uploading the note so i will have to type it in. Op note reads:

    Two arthroscopic portals were placed in the right knee inferior patella and arthroscope insturmentation was introduced into the right knee. Positive findings include a significant amount of synovitis in the patellofemoral joint and medial and lateral compartments. A synovectomy was performed in all of these areas. There was grade iii to iv chondromalacia in the patella and intercondylar groove, and chondroplasty was performed in this area. Upon entereing the intercondylar notch a compete acltear was found and this was debrided. Entering the lateral compartment, there was a macerated tear of the lateral meniscus at the posterior horn. A partial lateral menisectomy was performed out to a stable border. Lateral femoral condyle, lateral tibial plateau shows significant arthritic changes and chondromalacia, and chondroplasty was performed in both the lateral femoral condyle and lateral tibial plateau. Entering the medial compartment there was grade iii to iv chondromalacia of the medial femoral condyle and medial tibial plateau and chondroplasty was performed. There was evidence of loose bodies in the suprapatellar pouch and this was evacuated using a shaver.

    The insurance is secure horizon and i have coded this as 29881, 29876-59 but like i said im not sure about the acl debridement. I know the chondroplasty can be used with the g0289 but if it is the only thing done in that compartment. Please help not sure about the acl.

  4. #4


    Does anyone have any suggestions about how or if i could code the acl debridement and if so what code will it be the 29877

  5. #5


    This answer was posted on AAOS's website:

    Arthroscopic ACL débridement
    Q: Which CPT code should be used to report an arthroscopic anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) débridement?

    A: Report this procedure using CPT code 29999—Unlisted procedure, arthroscopy.

    This was from a March 2009 issue. Hope this helps.


  6. #6


    Thanks a bunch

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