tci Outpatient Facility Coding Alert - 2018 Issue 1

Reader Question: 38571 or 38572? Find out

Question: Which group of lymph nodes constitutes a "total pelvic lymphadenectomy" with reference to codes 38571 and 38572? For instance, if the surgeon doesn't remove all the lymph nodes, but he does more than a biopsy, should I report unlisted code 38579? North Dakota Subscriber Answer: The bilateral external iliac, internal iliac (hypogastric), and obturator nodes are all part of a pelvic lymphadenectomy. Here are the two CPT®  codes you mention with full descriptors: 38571 (Laparoscopy, surgical; with bilateral total pelvic lymphadenectomy) 38572 (Laparoscopy, surgical; with bilateral total pelvic lymphadenectomy and peri-aortic lymph node sampling (biopsy) single or...

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