College of American Pathologists
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  Your CPT Questions


cap today



August 2005

Q: Can a pathologist who receives a segmental colon resection from a patient with a history of Crohn’s disease report CPT code 88309 instead of 88307 since looking for dysplasia and cancer in the Crohn’s colon may require extra work?

A. The specimen type determines the appropriate code. A segmental resection of the colon in Crohn’s disease is reported by CPT code 88307, Colon, segmental resection, other than for tumor.

A. The specimen constitutes a resection of the acromioclavicular joint and should be reported as a single unit of code 88305, Joint, resection, regardless of how many containers it is received in. A unit of code 88311, Decalcification procedure (list separately in addition to code for surgical pathology examination), is also appropriate if the specimen is decalcified.

Frequently asked questions about CPT are published bimonthly in “Capitol Scan.” This section of CAP TODAY is a product of the CAP Economic Affairs Committee.

The codes and descriptions listed here are from Current Procedural Terminology, 4th ed., CPT 2006. CPT 2006 is copyrighted by the American Medical Association. To purchase CPT books, call the AMA at 800-621-8335.

For more information about CPT coding, visit the CPT Coding Resource Center on the CAP Web site.