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Digital Nerve Block


Question

A patient came into the emergency room with a laceration of the thumb. The doctor performed a wound exploration as well as suturing the laceration. He performed a digital block for anesthesia and we have charged 64450. Is this correct? Our billing service is kicking it out.

Answer

Nerve blocks that are performed to provide anesthesia for a separately codable service are not separately billable or codable.  It is only when the physician specifically indicates that the nerve block is performed for post operative pain control that it be billed with another procedure.  Of course when the patient comes in for a nerve block for pain control it is acceptable to code it.

Disclaimer: All articles intended for general consumption 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.
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