Changes to X-Ray Codes for 2016
Written by ACA   
Wednesday, January 20, 2016 12:00 AM

The American Chiropractic Association reports that CPT® has made some changes to a few commonly billed x-ray codes. The AMA/Specialty Society Relative Value Scale (RVS) Update Committee (RUC) Relativity Assessment Workgroup (RAW) marked codes 72170, 73500, 73520, and 73550 for “restructuring as bundled services for hip, pelvis, and femur.”

As a result, CPT® added “a new family of six bundled codes (73501-73503, 73521-73523) for hip and pelvis radiologic examination with a specific number of views.” These will replace deleted codes 73500, 73510, 73520, 73530, 73540, and 73550. In addition, “two new codes (73551, 73552) were established to describe the specific number of views of the femur... in order to more clearly define the work performed, and to reflect current clinical practice.”

The thoracolumbar procedures have been updated with the addition of four new codes 72081-72084. These will replace deleted codes 72010, 72069, and 72090; and the revision of code 72080. According to CPT®, “these changes simplify the reporting procedures for scoliosis evaluations and other studies; address current changes in clinical practice; and provide a coding structure similar to the structure of other imaging families.”

The table below explains the changes that were made to these codes, effective January 1, 2016.

Deleted X-Ray Code

New Code

Additional Choices

73500 hip, unilateral 1 view

73501 Radiologic examination, hip, unilateral, with pelvis when performed; 1 view

 

73510 complete minimum of 2 views

73502 Radiologic examination, hip, unilateral, with pelvis when performed; 2-3 views

73503 minimum of 4 views

73520 hips, bilateral, minimum 2 views each hip

73521 Radiologic examination, hips, bilateral, with pelvis when performed; 2 views

73522 3-4 views

73523 minimum of 5 views

73540 pelvis & hips, infant or child, minimum 2 views

73501 Radiologic examination, hip, unilateral, with pelvis when performed; 1 view

73502 2-3 views

73503 minimum of 4 views

73550 femur 2 views

73551 Radiologic examination, femur; 1 view

73552 minimum 2 views

72010 Radiologic examination, spine, entire, survey study, anteroposterior and lateral

72082 Radiologic examination, spine, entire thoracic and lumbar, including skull, cervical and sacral spine if performed (e.g., scoliosis evaluation); 2 or 3 views

 

72069 Radiologic examination, spine, thoracolumbar, standing (scoliosis)

72081 Radiologic examination, spine, entire thoracic and lumbar, including skull, cervical and sacral spine if performed (e.g., scoliosis evaluation); one view

72082 2 or 3 views

72083 4 or 5 views

72084 minimum of 6 views

72090 scoliosis study, including supine and erect studies

72081 Radiologic examination, spine, entire thoracic and lumbar, including skull, cervical and sacral spine if performed (e.g., scoliosis evaluation); one view

72082 2 or 3 views

72083 4 or 5 views

72084 minimum of 6 views

REVISIONS

 

NOTE

72080 thoracolumbar, 2 views

thoracolumbar junction, minimum of 2 views (revised description in bold font) should include examination of the thoracolumbar junction*

* The junction between the thoracic spine and the lumbar spine, the part of the vertebral column from the eleventh thoracic vertebra to the first lumbar vertebra.

72020 spine, single view, specify level

For a single view that includes the entire thoracic and lumbar spine, use 72081