AHA Coding Clinic® for ICD-9 - 2014 Issue 1; Ask the Editor

Fluctuations in Body Mass Index (BMI)

A 56-year-old patient was admitted to the hospital with shortness of breath, orthopnea, fatigue, paroxysmal nocturnal dyspnea and edema. On admission, his calculated body mass index (BMI) was 32.5. However, during the stay the patient’s BMI fluctuates and at discharge the BMI value is 34. The provider’s final diagnostic statement listed, “Fluid overload due to acute on chronic diastolic heart failure.” The patient was discharged and advised to monitor his body weight, reduce salt intake and restrict fluid intake. When the BMI varies during the admission due to fluid overload or other factors, how should it be coded? ...

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