Knee Ligament Reconstruction
Editor's Note: This article by Paul Cadorette, director of education for mdStrategies, originally appeared in The Coding Advocate, mdStrategies free monthly newsletter. Sign-up to receive this newsletter by clicking here.
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There are two sets of ligaments that stabilize the knee joint. The medial and lateral collateral ligaments are known as extra-articular ligaments because they are located outside the joint. The anterior and posterior cruciate ligaments are located within the joint so they are termed inta-articular ligaments. In instances when a patient sustains a serious knee injury it may be necessary to reconstruct both the ACL and PCL. The CPT code for this procedure reads "Ligamentous reconstruction (augmentation), knee; intra-articular (open)." Since there is no mention of one or more ligaments, how should this code be reported?
A recent article in CPT Assistant (April 2009) instructs coders to report CPT code 27428 for reconstruction of the ACL and 27428-59 for reconstruction of the PCL, so it would be appropriate to report this code one time for each ligament that is reconstructed.
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