Is It Co-surgery or Not?

September 15, 2016

Question:
I was asked by a urologist to clear a vena cava thrombus during his patient’s nephrectomy for a malignancy. I was able to dissect the malignancy from the vena cava without any reconstruction. I think I should bill for my work separately from the urologist. My coders disagree. How is this billed?

Answer:
Thank you for your question. In the Society of Vascular Surgeons (SVS) Coding course we discuss numerous scenarios where more than one surgeon participates in a surgery. In your scenario, CPT code 50230 describes a nephrectomy, radical with regional lymphadenectomy and/or vena cava thrombectomy. In this case, two surgeons with different skill sets and specialties perform distinct parts of this single CPT code. This is classic co-surgery. You will report 50230 with a 62 modifier and the urologist will report 50230 with a 62 modifier.

Please join us in Chicago on October 21-22, 2016 for the SVS sponsored vascular coding course with KZA consultant Teri Romano as a faculty member. Can’t make the October course or have too large a staff for all to attend? Contact KZA for an intensive and interactive vascular coding course at your location.

*This response is based on the best information available as of 09/15/16.

Newsletter_Signup_CodingCoaches

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.