Radiology Question for the Week of April 17, 2017

Question:

The facility ordered CPT code 71021, and the radiologist documented a lateral and apical lordotic view only. Would it be appropriate to bill 71010 and 71035 or modify CPT 71021 with a 52?

Answer:

You would report 71035—radiologic examination, chest, special views (e.g., lateral decubitus, Bucky studies). It is not appropriate to code 71010 for a lateral chest x-ray as this code is specific for a frontal view, not lateral.

In the past, we would have said to code 71035 x 2 but the most recent information from the American Medical Association and the American College of Radiology is to code 71035 just once.

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