Q: Coding Escharotomy Code 16035 and 16036 – “Can you please provide some guidelines coding escharotomy code 16035 and 16036?” This is probably going to take a little bit more time, right?

Laureen: A: Well, just try and grab that first. Yeah, grab that 16035 in Find-A-Code. Let’s see if we can. I’m kind of familiar with teaching this from doing the Blitz. Escharotomy is basically where a wound, a really big wound is healing like a burn, and if you picture, if you ever had a scab, when if you’re not a scab picker and you let it heal, it will eventually start pulling the margins of the skin, it’ll hurt a little bit. So, picture a really bad scar, and what they’ll do is they’ll actually cut into the scar to release it, so it’s not an ectomy, they’re not removing it, they’re cutting into it.

Coding Escharotomy Code 16035 and 16036 – Video

Alicia: Does that picture help?

Laureen: Yes.

Chandra: The difference between the two is initial and additional if that helps, the 35 and 36

Laureen: OK. For the additional… one cut to do a scar release. It’s the first code if they have to do an additional one then the 036 is an add-on.

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Coding Escharotomy Code 16035 and 16036


About the Author:

Alicia has been working in the medical field for over 20 years. She first learned about medical coding while working in a medical records department at a resort town hospital near where she was raised. Through the years she has held several jobs in the medical field from, CNA, EMT, Pharmacy technician and Medial Records Abstractor and Analyst. Outside of the medical field she has worked as a Real Estate agent, and owned her own on-line retail business. The medical field has always been where she felt the most comfortable. Alicia has taught medical coding, billing and medical law and ethics at a private college. She also did contract work in HCC Risk Adjustment and discovered she really enjoyed ICD work. Because she loves to learn Alicia is working towards her Masters in Health Care Administration with an emphasis on education. Having taken many online classes through the years to complete her degree she feels very comfortable with both face to face and on-line learning. Alicia will tell you that not only does she love medical coding but she has a passion for teaching it. Alicia lives in the middle of Texas with her husband who is a Pastor, five of her six children, three dogs and two cats.

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