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Urology Coding Alert

Reader Question:

Report 52005 for Ureter Catheter Placement Through the Cystoscope

Question: A general surgeon asked our urologist to put in ureteral catheters before he performed a pelvic surgical procedure. What code should we use for the insertion of the ureteral catheters?

Arkansas Subscriber

Answer: You should submit 52005 (Cystourethroscopy, with ureteral catheterization, with or without irrigation, instillation, or ureteropyelography, exclusive of radiologic service). Ureteral catheters are placed to help the surgeon identify the ureters during surgery and to avoid injury to the ureters.

For Medicare claims, do not add modifier 50 (Bilateral procedure) as code 52005 describes both unilateral or bilateral placements. However, remember that for non-Medicare payers, you should code 52005-50 for bilateral placements.

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