College of American Pathologists
Printable Version

  Your CPT Questions


cap today



September 2006

Q: What is the proper code for a gallbladder that was submitted with a lymph node? Both specimens were benign. Because we have always considered the lymph node to be incidental to the gallbladder, we only use CPT code 88304. Should we code this specimen as 88304 and 88305? The gallbladder was removed for lithiasis (stones) and the lymph node was incidental.

A. A gallbladder with a lymph node submitted as a single specimen is reported using CPT code 88304. The lymph node is considered incidental to the gallbladder.

Q: A patient had a positive test for the tumor-suppressor gene BRCA2, and we received two specimens. The first specimen was the right tube and ovary, and the diagnosis for each was benign. The second specimen was the left tube and ovary, and it was also benign. Because of the possibility of cancer, an extra section of each specimen was taken. Should each specimen be coded as 88305 or as 88307?

A. The correct CPT code for each specimen is 88305, Ovary with or without tube, non-neoplastic, because no disease was detected. It would be incorrect to use code 88307, Ovary with or without tube, neoplastic.

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.