Home » Categories » Respiratory Therapy Coding

Bronchial Alveolar Lavage


Question

Can you tell me the difference between cell washing in CPT 31622 and bronchial alveolar lavage in CPT 31624? 

Answer

Here is information from CPT Assistant, September 2004, pages 8-9:

 

"Code 31624, Bronchoscopy, rigid or flexible, with or without fluoroscopic guidance; with bronchial alveolar lavage, describes bronchoscopy with alveolar lavage, which is not the same as routine "washings." Bronchial alveolar lavage (BAL) allows the recovery of cells as well as noncellular components from the epithelial surface of the lower respiratory tract. This differs significantly from washings, which refer only to the aspiration of secretions or small amounts of instilled saline from larger airways. Bronchial alveolar lavage involves repeated instillations of sterile saline occurring in aliquots with aspiration into one or more containers. Large amounts of saline are pushed into the airway and then recovered by suction. Sequential and separate aspirations are numbered for laboratory testing. This particular type of bronchoscopy aids in the diagnoses of unusual infections in immunocompromised hosts and guides therapy in chronic inflammatory or fibrotic disorders such as pulmonary fibrosis and rheumatoid lung disease."


Disclaimer: All articles intended for general guidance only and not as a recommendation for a specific situation. Readers should consult an official source (AHA, AMA, etc.) or a qualified attorney for specific legal guidance.

Attachments Attachments
There are no attachments for this article.
Related Articles RSS Feed
CPT Code 94664
Viewed 11541 times since Wed, Nov 17, 2010
Technical and Professional Component of Stress Testing
Viewed 1670 times since Wed, Nov 17, 2010
Bronchodilator Treatment Included in CPT 94060
Viewed 7607 times since Wed, Nov 17, 2010
Nitrous Oxide Usage
Viewed 992 times since Wed, Jun 8, 2011
Nasotracheal Aspiration for Sputum
Viewed 3225 times since Wed, Nov 17, 2010
Oxygen set up
Viewed 1223 times since Wed, Feb 8, 2012
Pulse Ox
Viewed 2077 times since Sun, Feb 17, 2013
Report 94664 Reported 1 Time Only Per Day of Service
Viewed 1905 times since Wed, Nov 17, 2010
Oxygen Per Hour
Viewed 2925 times since Wed, Nov 17, 2010
Respiratory Therapy
Viewed 1533 times since Wed, Jan 4, 2012
Quorum Health Resources, LLC :: 105 Continental Place Brentwood, TN 37027 :: Phone: (615) 371-4506