CPT 2018: Anticipated Changes in Radiology

Several CPT changes are anticipated for radiology in 2018.  The biggest changes will occur in diagnostic and interventional radiology. Many new codes have been created as a result of bundling mandates from the AMA’s Relativity Assessment Workgroup (RAW).  Any code pair identified as being performed together 75 percent or more of the time are referred to the CPT Editorial Panel for potential bundling.

Diagnostic Imaging

Chest and abdomen x-ray codes are anticipated to be overhauled to reflect code descriptions based on number of views rather than type of views. Chest x-ray codes 71010, 71015, 71020, 71021, 71022, 71023, 71030, 71034, and 71035 will be deleted and four new codes created to report chest x-ray procedures described by the number of views vs view-specific descriptors.

Abdominal x-ray codes 74000, 74010 and 74020 will be deleted and three new codes added to report abdominal x-ray procedures described by the number of views vs view-specific descriptors.

Cryoablation Treatment of Pulmonary Tumors

There will be a new CPT Category I code to replace Category III code 0340T, Ablation, pulmonary tumor(s), as well as revision to code 32998, Ablation therapy for reduction to include imaging for ablation of tumor.

Endovascular Repair Infrarenal Aorta

There will be a number of new bundled codes and revision to existing EVAR codes to demonstrate the most common application and the addition of codes to represent adjunctive procedures that may be performed with EVAR.

Endovenous Ablation of Incompetent Veins

New codes will be established for the reporting of endovenous ablation therapy of incompetent veins using a chemical adhesive.  Revision of injection codes 36468, 36470, and 36471 will be made to distinguish treatment of spider veins and incompetent veins for telangiectasia and for diagnoses other than telangiectasia.

In addition, look for new codes to be created for reporting the injection of a non-compounded foam sclerosant for treatment of incompetent veins.

Bone Marrow Diagnostic Procedures

A new code will be created to describe a diagnostic bone marrow procedure that bundles biopsy and aspiration into one code. Currently, there are Correct Coding Initiative edits that do not allow the reporting of both procedures.

Brachial Retrograde Artery Introduction of Needle or Catheter

Look for angiography codes 36120 and 75658 to be deleted.  Code 36140, Introduction of Needle or catheter, brachial retrograde artery, will be revised to describe upper or lower extremity and will become a stand-alone code.

As always, ADVOCATE will keep you up to date on this and all issues impacting radiology as they become available.

Jennifer Bash, RHIA, CPC, CIRCC, RCC
Coding & Documentation Education Manager