General Surgery Coding Alert - eNewsletter

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General Surgery Coding Alert – an AAPC eNewsletter

General surgery coders report the gambit of services and procedures — from routine E/M visits to FNAs, biopsies, shave removals, debridements, laparoscopies, reconstructions, repairs, and more. Diagnoses, of course, traverse all body systems, dialing up the challenges of general surgery coding.

But you don’t have to face the challenges alone. Tap into expert know-how with an e-subscription to General Surgery Coding Alert.

Keeping Your General Surgery Claims on Track Just Got Easier

Our general surgery coding experts provide you with timely, game-changing guidance to hone your reporting skills.

Every monthly issue gives you a wealth of information, including how-to coding tutorials, revenue-boosting tips, and answers to questions from general surgery coders like you.

Learn how to navigate op reports, distinguish an acellular dermal replacement from an allograft, and report an IVC filter removal or transcatheter replacement. With General Surgery Coding Alert, you get the help you need to conquer compliance requirements and secure maximum revenue. 

5 More Reasons to Subscribe to General Surgery Coding Alert

  • Always Current: Whether it’s code and guideline changes, trending CERT errors, regulatory updates, or revisions to modifiers, payer policies, and NCCI edits, you’ll stay informed with General Surgery Coding Alert.
  • Real-World Tools: Download handy clip ‘n’ save cheat sheets and checklists covering subjects such as E/M coding, bilateral billing rules, and auditing.
  • More Than an Annual Subscription: In addition to 12 monthly issues of indispensable coding guidance, you get online access to thousands of general surgery coding articles, all of which are searchable by code or keyword.
  • ICD-10 Tutorials: The list of diseases, injuries, and conditions treated by general surgeons extends into several medical specialties, which is why General Surgery Coding Alert breaks down diagnoses reporting in every issue.
  • Earn CEUs Toward Your CPC or CGSC: Get 6 CEUs at no extra charge with your annual subscription to General Surgery Coding Alert.

Newsletters are regular and timely publications written by subject matter experts with their fingers on the pulse of your industry.

In the case of coding newsletters, your subscription will give you all the latest information you need, plus a refresher on things you might have learned but forgotten.

Coding newsletters feature real reader questions, interviews, and guidance from experts. You’ll find clinical scenarios and expert advice to explain code choice and guide you through the code selection process. A specialty-specific newsletter promotes accurate coding, leading to higher revenues and less time and money wasted on justifying billing.

Non-coding healthcare newsletters provide up-to-the-minute news on changes in federal regulations governing reimbursement and legislative developments. You’ll find ways to navigate often dense government-speak and learn how to apply regulatory changes to your practice or agency.

The knowledge disseminated in each newsletter issue can help protect your practice or business from costly mistakes and even help boost your revenue with guidance on the best ways to:

  • Code challenging scenarios or use modifiers correctly
  • Stay on top of the latest news and regulatory changes pertaining to the healthcare market
  • Learn how to ethically optimize your reporting to avoid undercoding and missed opportunities

Healthcare Business Monthly is a broad-scope publication that provides information on a range of topics, including human-interest stories based on coders. It also covers healthcare issues beyond coding, compliance, or post-acute care — such as front-desk etiquette, keeping the office clean, etc.

Coding newsletters, more focused than Healthcare Business Monthly, exclusive cover coding, billing, and regulations for the title specialty.

Non-coding healthcare newsletters dig into the regulatory news pertaining to healthcare. These are up-to-the-minute publications. You won’t find such in-depth information for compliance, practice management, MDS, home health, or hospice in Healthcare Business Monthly.

AAPC coding newsletters will help new coders get up to speed on the job. The articles cover several in-specialty topics each month and delve into the specifics of coding procedures and services. A new coder could get information on a coding scenario in a newsletter before they encounter it in the workplace, which is a huge asset.

Coding newsletters provide more exposure to the news you need, and the quizzes offer an opportunity to apply your coding knowledge in a low-stakes situation. Newsletter articles and reader questions add to and reinforce coder training. You’ll find expert opinions and advice from trusted and experienced sources that can help you understand the nuances of the profession.

Throughout the year, all newsletters contain updates to codes and coding guidelines that are vital to new and veteran coders. From articles on code changes and quarterly National Correct Coding Initiative (NCCI) edits to discussions of ad-hoc guideline changes issued by CMS and other agencies, newsletters keep coders informed and current. Having a specialty-focused publication addressing and analyzing updates is an important tool for every coder.

For instance, NCCI edits are often applied behind the scenes to coding software, and coders may be staring at a denial without realizing why. Newsletter articles will update coders to the edits that affect their practices the most and translate them into practical advice. That way, even veteran coders will be aware.

Secondly, there is so much to remember in coding that everyone occasionally forgets how to report something. The newsletter provides a monthly refresher on coding topics that a veteran coder might not have seen in a while.

Finally, most AAPC coding newsletters provide coders with regular AAPC CEU opportunities that can help keep your credentials current.

CPT® is a registered trademark of the American Medical Association. All rights reserved.

Most coding newsletters are specific to a medical specialty, and coders working in those specialties should obviously subscribe to newsletters aligned with their professional interests.
Several newsletters feature subject matter that crosses specialty lines. E/M Coding Alert, ICD-10 Coding Alert, and Health Information Compliance, for example, all contain articles and reader questions applicable to most specialties, practices, and institutions.

You’ll also find newsletters dedicated to compliance, practice management, skilled nursing facility, home health, hospice, and Medicare Part B. These newsletters are beneficial to practice managers, billing/coding staff, Minimum Data Set nurses, clinicians, and administrators.


eNewsletter Title


Medical Coding

Anesthesia Coding Alert


Cardiology Coding Alert


E/M Coding Alert


ED Coding Alert


Gastroenterology Coding Alert


General Surgery Coding Alert


ICD-10 Coding Alert


Neurology and Pain Management Coding Alert


Neurosurgery Coding Alert


Ob-gyn Coding Alert


Oncology/Hematology Coding Alert


Optometry/Ophthalmology Coding Alert


Orthopedic Coding Alert


Otolaryngology Coding Alert


Path/Lab Coding Alert


Pediatric Coding Alert


Podiatry Coding and Billing Alert


Primary Care Coding Alert


Pulmonology Coding Alert


Radiology Coding Alert


Urology Coding Alert



Health Information Compliance Alert


Medicare Compliance & Reimbursement


Part B Insider


Practice Management Alert



Home Care Week


Hospice Insider


MDS Alert


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AAPC newsletters are all available in full-color electronic format. The “flipbook” format functions like an online magazine. You’ll be able to click on live links in articles to go directly to resource websites, and you can do keyword searches of the newsletter.

Articles in an eNewsletter can be downloaded to your computer and then printed.

Newsletters monthly issue date varies from month to month. Different newsletter may or may not be published on the same date of the month.

Fees paid for any subscription term are paid in advance and are not refundable in whole or in part. You may terminate your subscription at any time and continue using the services until the expiration of your pre-paid term.

How to Cancel: You may terminate your subscription by contacting AAPC via phone or email. To ensure that your credit card does not get charged, please make your cancelation request at least two business days prior to the end date of your subscription term.

You will not be able to log in to your account to view a newsletter once your subscription expires. If you decide to end your subscription but would like to refer to past articles, you should download the articles prior to the expiration of your subscription.

Failed attempts may lead to negative pressure therapy. When your surgeon treats integumentary wounds, you have several code families to choose from that seem to overlap in confusing ways. Let our experts show you how to choose between debridement codes and various active wound care codes to accurately bill for your surgeons’ work. Spotlight Secondary Intention Surgeons have lots of ways [...]

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Learn to distinguish 27 abdominal pain code choices. When you face an office or op note with mention of abdominal pain, having some anatomical and clinical knowledge can go a long way to choosing the correct R10.- code Consider the following five tips to help you quickly focus your diagnosis coding when reporting cases that hinge on abdominal pain. Hint: [...]

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Establish parameters for timeliness to capture detail. Poor medical record hygiene may lead to poor medical outcomes and poor reimbursement for your surgery practice. That’s why we have this refresher for you, based on our experts’ guidance, plus the words of Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) and the National Committee for Quality Assurance (NCQA). 3-Cs: As NCQA says, [...]

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“Get Your Medical Records in Top Shape With These 3 Tips” on page 5 exhorted you to keep your medical records consistent, current, and complete. To do that, you need to know the core elements that should be in your documentation. The National Committee for Quality Assurance (NCQA) is the organization responsible for the Healthcare Effectiveness Data and Information Set [...]

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Question: Our surgeon performed “vein stripping” in the patient’s right calf due to inflamed varicose veins that were causing itching, swelling and discomfort. What are the correct diagnosis and procedure codes? Ohio Subscriber Answer: The appropriate diagnosis code is I83.11 (Varicose veins of right lower extremity with inflammation). You don’t describe the technique that the surgeon used for the “vein stripping,” but [...]

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Question: Our surgeon performed an EGD for a patient complaining of recurrent heartburn, cough, and laryngitis. During the procedure the surgeon identified inflammatory changes in the esophagus and diagnosed the patient with GERD. What diagnosis code(s) should we use for the case? Alabama Subscriber Answer: You should code the final diagnosis, not the presenting signs and symptoms. Because the surgeon doesn’t mention [...]

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