Faster Way for Coders to Memorize New Codes

Rewind:  ICD-10-CM by the Alphabet

I like to review the ICD-10-CM by the alphabet at least once per year as it provides an easy way to memorize ICD-10-CM codes or at least the chapters.     Last year, I did this review in table form.  This year, I thought that I would do the review using pictures.

Chapter 1 is Infectious and Parasitic Diseases (A-B), and the mnemonic is Advancing Bugs. 

Neoplasms are in Chapter 2 and include the beginning letters of C and D.   The mnemonic is Cancer and Death.

Chapter 3 (Diseases of Blood and Blood Forming Organs and Certain Disorders Involving the Immune Mechanism) which includes the last portion of the D codes.   The mnemonic is Dracula.

The Endocrine, Nutritional, and Metabolic Diseases are found in Chapter 4.   These codes begin with E and the mnemonic is Endocrine.

Chapter 5 (Mental, Behavioral, and Neurodevelopmental Disorders) begins with the F.   The mnemonic is Freud.  

The Diseases of the Nervous System are found in Chapter 6 and the codes begin with letter G.   The mnemonic is “Gittery”. 

Chapter 7 includes the Diseases of the Eye begin with “H” and the mnemonic is Hyphema. 

The Diseases of the Ear and Mastoid Process have a mnemonic of Hearing.   These “H” codes can be found in Chapter 8.  

Chapter 9 contains the Diseases of the Circulatory System.   These codes begin with “I” and the mnemonic is Infarction.  

Chapter 10 contains Diseases of the Respiratory System.  These codes begin with the letter “J”.   The mnemonic is “Just Gasping”. 

Chapter 11 is halfway through ICD-10-CM and begin with “K”.   The mnemonic for Chapter 11 representing Diseases of the Digestive System is “Knot in Stomach”.   

Chapter 12 codes begin with the letter “L” and have a mnemonic of “Lipoma”.   The Diseases of Skin and Subcutaneous Tissue are represented with this picture:   

Chapter 13 includes Diseases of the Musculoskeletal System and begin with letter “M”.   The mnemonic is “Musculoskeletal”.  

The Diseases of the Genitourinary System begin with the letter “N” and can be found in Chapter 14.   The mnemonic is “Nocturia”.  

 Pregnancy, Childbirth, and Puerperium codes begin with “O” and can be found in Chapter 15.    The mnemonic is “Obstetrics.

Chapter 16 (Certain Conditions Arising in Perinatal Period) codes begin with “P” and the mnemonic is Newborn.  

Congenital Malformations, Deformations, and Chromosomal Abnormalities are found in Chapter 17.   The mnemonic is Quirky, and the codes begin with “Q”. 

Chapter 18 contains Signs, Symptoms, and Abnormal Clinical and Laboratory Findings.   These codes begin with “R” and the mnemonic is “Relative Symptoms”.  

The Chapter 19 codes are “Simply Traumatic” that begin with letter “S and T”.   The title of this chapter is Injuries and Poisonings. 

Chapter 20 codes represent the External Cause Codes and begin with letters “V, W, X, and Y”.   The mnemonics for this chapter of Vehicle, Whoops, eXposure, and whY.  

Picture20   Picture21   Picture22   Picture23

Chapter 21 (Factors Influencing Health Status) codes begin with letter “Z”.   The Z codes have a mnemonic of Zero Problems.  

The newest chapter is Chapter 22 which is titled Codes for Special Purposes.   These codes begin with the letter “U” and the mnemonic is “Unusual”…

While the mnemonics do not provide the entire code, it is a mechanism to know the approximate meaning for the ICD-10-CM code.    Please enjoy the association.

Programming Note: Listen to Laurie Johnson live every Tuesday during Talk Ten Tuesdays, 10 Eastern.

Resources: 2021 ICD-10-CM Manual



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