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Radiology Coding Alert

Reader Question:

Virtual Colonography: No Code Exists

Question: We sometimes perform virtual colonogra-phy, either without contrast or with 3-D reconstruction. Which codes should we report for these procedures?

Oregon Subscriber Answer: Because the AMA has not yet established a code for virtual colonography, you should report 74150 (Computed tomography, abdomen; without contrast material) when you perform it without contrast. If you perform 3-D reconstruction, report 76375 (Coronal, sagittal, multiplanar, oblique, 3-dimensional and/or holographic reconstruction of computerized axial tomography, magnetic resonance imaging, or other tomographic modality) instead.
Before you report these codes, you should ensure that your carrier reimburses for this procedure. While some payers (such as The Regence Group, an Oregon insurer) consider this service investigational, other insurers will pay for this procedure if you assign the correct diagnosis code for it. Your best bet is to pre-authorize all virtual colonographies before you perform them.