Which lymph nodes should be included to be considered a "total" pelvic lymphadenectomy/CPT 38571? When should I consider using the unlisted code or adding a –52 modifier?
External iliac, hypogastric, and obturator nodes are all considered a part of a pelvic lymphadenectomy; however, 38571 (Laparoscopy, surgical; with bilateral total pelvic lymphadenectomy) does not specifically delineate which nodes have to be removed. Therefore, 38571 should be used to report all therapeutic pelvic lymphadenectomies with one caveat and one exception.
ICD-10 ‘grace period’ ending soon, but don’t panic
Written by Mark Painter and Ray Painter, M.D
We are a mere 2 months away from the anniversary of the great ICD-10 implementation. Oct. 1, 2015 turned out to be a Y2K-like non-event, with relatively few hiccups for most physician offices. The smooth transition was due, in part, to the agreement by Medicare and several other private payers to delay denial of claims and suspend chart audits based on lack of specificity of the ICD–10 code(s). The American Medical Association requested this phase-in, or “grace period,” which ends Oct. 1, 2016.