Health Information Management

Coding a full-thickness burn of the colon wall with serosal irritation following a colon popectomy

HIM-HIPAA Insider, February 3, 2009

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Q: How do you code a full-thickness burn of the colon wall with serosal irritation following a colon polpectomy?

A:
Based on the limited information you provided as well as the assumption that the instrument—and not the physician—caused the burn, the following two codes are most appropriate:

  • 947.3: Burn of internal organ/gastrointestinal tract
  • E874.3: Mechanical failure of instrument during procedure; endoscopic examination 

However, if the physician’s error caused the burn (as opposed to the instrument’s failure), then you should report the following two codes:

  • 997.4: Digestive system complications due to a procedure
  • 947.3: Burn of internal organ, gastrointestinal tract  

Editor’s note: Shelley C. Safian, MAOM/HSM, CCS-P, CPC-H, CHA, of Safian Communications Services in Orlando, FL, answered this question. This Q&A was excerpted from JustCoding.com.



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