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Coding tip: Correctly code lumbar discography

Ambulatory Surgery Reimbursement Update, April 24, 2007

A physician performs a discography procedure to assess the level of damage to a herniated disc. Code this procedure based on the number of levels on which the physician performs discography.

Report CPT code 62290 ("Injection procedure for discography, each level; lumbar") for each level.

For example, if a physician performs a discogram at levels L1-2, L2-3, and L3-4, bill code 62290 on the claim form three times. Append modifier -59 to those codes billed subsequent to the first level to help avoid a payer denial.

Use discography CPT code 72295-TC for the radiology supervision and interpretation performed in the lumbar area. You should also report this code the same number of times as the levels on which the physician performed discography..

Report code 72295-TC provided that the payer allows you to bill radiology services (which Medicare does not reimburse).