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Significant modifications to medical coding for Chiropractors in 2023

Helping Acupuncturists, Chiropractors, Physical Therapists

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Chiropractors will face significant medical coding changes in 2023. These changes include the introduction of 1176 new codes, 28 revised codes, and the removal of 287 codes under ICD-10. Additionally, new codes for lumbar and lumbosacral disc disorders, spinal muscle weakness and atrophy, among others, will be introduced for chiropractors. Changes to coding and documentation for E/M services will also affect chiropractors in 2023. To navigate these changes, chiropractic coding companies can assist practices in submitting accurate claims and streamlining their medical billing and coding processes.

Significant ICD-10 Code Updates Relevant to Chiropractors in 2023:

New codes have been introduced for identifying annulus fibrous defect (disc) of the lumbar and lumbosacral spine, which are lower back conditions. These codes are part of the updates to the ICD-10 codes and are intended to provide more specific diagnoses for these conditions:

M51.0 Thoracic, thoracolumbar and lumbosacral intervertebral disc disorders with myelopathy

M51.1 Thoracic, thoracolumbar and lumbosacral intervertebral disc disorders with radiculopathy

M51.2 Other thoracic, thoracolumbar and lumbosacral intervertebral disc displacement

M51.3 Other thoracic, thoracolumbar and lumbosacral intervertebral disc degeneration

There are 7 new codes for reporting annular defects in the lumbar and lumbosacral regions:

M51.A Other lumbar and lumbosacral annulus fibrosus disc defects

M51.A0 Intervertebral annulus fibrosus defect, lumbar region, unspecified size

M51.A1 …small, lumbar region

M51.A2 …large, lumbar region

M51.A: …lumbosacral region, unspecified size

M51.A4 …small, lumbosacral region

M51.A5 …large, lumbosacral region

New codes have been introduced to specifically identify spinal regions affected by muscle wasting and atrophy:

M62.5 Muscle wasting and atrophy, not elsewhere classified, back

M62.5A0: …cervical

M62.5A1: …thoracic

M62.5A2: …lumbosacral

M62.5A9: …unspecified level

The coding for concussions has been updated to include a new subcategory, S06.0XA, which identifies a concussion with an unknown loss of consciousness:

S06.0XA- Concussion with loss of consciousness status unknown

S06.0XAA …initial encounter

S06.0XAD …subsequent encounter

S06.0XAS …sequela

Slipped Upper Femoral Epiphysis (Nontraumatic) is a condition that affects adolescents and causes the femoral head to slip in relation to the rest of the femur due to damage to the growth plate, while the head of the femur remains in the hip joint cup:

Effective October 1, 2022, the Slipped Upper Femoral Epiphysis (Nontraumatic) (M93.0-) code set was expanded to include more diagnoses. The following are some of the changes:

  • The expanded M93.0-code sets provide more options with five or six characters, which can specify the severity of the epiphysis condition as unspecified, acute, chronic, or acute on chronic.

  • There are many codes that indicate laterality.

  • A new category of M codes has been added to identify sternum and rib fractures that are associated with chest compression and cardiopulmonary resuscitation.

  • The term "stable" has been added to M93.01-, M93.02-, M93,03- codes.

Post-viral fatigue syndrome:

A new code, G93.31, has been added to identify post-viral fatigue syndrome. Patients with this syndrome may have difficulty recovering from common chiropractic conditions, and insurers often require identifying complicating conditions and comorbidities in claim documentation, as per an article on

ICD-10 uses the letter "V" to indicate an external cause, and injuries caused by e-bike accidents are reported separately from those caused by motorcycle accidents under codes V20-V29. The codes for e-bike injuries have been expanded.

V20.2- Unspecified motorcycle rider injured in collision with pedestrian or animal in nontraffic accident

V20.91XA: Unspecified electric (assisted) bicycle rider injured in collision with pedestrian or animal in traffic accident, initial encounter

V21.51XA: Electric (assisted) bicycle passenger injured in collision with pedal cycle in traffic accident, initial encounter


Stay Up to Speed on E/M Coding Updates

The American Medical Association (AMA) has updated the CPT Evaluation and Management (E/M) Code and guidelines, which will be effective from January 2023. These changes build upon the revisions made to the E/M office visit CPT codes (99201-99215) code descriptors and documentation standards in 2021. The updated guidelines are aimed at focusing documentation of E/M office visits on how physicians think and take care of patients, instead of mandatory standards that encourage copy/paste and checking boxes, according to the AMA.

The E/M updates aim to reduce the administrative burden for physicians across various specialties. They simplify the coding process for E/M services and offer more flexibility for chiropractic billing services. For codes 99202-99205, the level of MDM or total time spent during the encounter determines code selection. Chiropractors can use add-on code 99417 for services lasting more than 74 minutes. It is important for providers to be familiar with the essential CPT codes for chiropractic services, 98940-98943, and to ensure appropriate clinical documentation.


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