Question:

Can we report 31622 if the operative report states that the tracheobronchial tree was evaluated with a bronchoscope and that sterile saline washings were recovered and sent for culture and cytologic examination is performed?

Answer:

Code 31622 for cell washings includes the terminology “(separate procedure)” in the code description. If the operative report states that the tracheobronchial tree was evaluated with a bronchoscope and that sterile saline washings were recovered and sent for culture and/or cytologic examination, 31622 is correct. CPT® considers this procedure to be diagnostic in nature.

This question was answered in our Coding Essentials for RT/Pulmonary Function. For more hot topics relating to respiratory services, please visit our store or call us at 1.800.252.1578, ext. 2.

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