Home » Categories » Imaging/Radiology Coding

Foot vs. Ankle MRI


When our physicians order a foot MRI, our Rad department is charging CPT#73721.   The explanation given by the rad department is as follows:  "When a patient is positioned for MRI of foot &/or ankle, the positioning is the same, the images and sequences are the same.  The CPT billing code is the same and defined as:  MRI lower ext. joint (any) without contrast.  73721.  The radiologist describes both ankle & foot tendons and ligaments within the body of the report." 


The index in the CPT book for "MRI, foot" takes me to CPT#73718.   Is it appropriate for the radiology department to have a written order from the physician stating "MRI, foot" and to be charging CPT#73721?


If the radiology department is going to change the exam, then the ordering physician should be asked to revise the order.  If the order is for a foot MRI, then the correct CPT code is 73718.  Even though your radiology department does the exam in the same method, there may be payers who pay differently based on the CPT code.  They may also be medical necessity issues that are different for the different CPT codes.

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
Modifier Discontinued Radiology Procedure
Viewed 2065 times since Wed, Aug 3, 2011
Multiple Breast Biopsies
Viewed 7568 times since Wed, Nov 17, 2010
Inspiration and Expiration PA Chest Films
Viewed 10109 times since Wed, Nov 17, 2010
Nuclear Bone Scans and SPECT
Viewed 2191 times since Wed, Jan 5, 2011
Nuclear Medicine-Myocardial SPECT
Viewed 1536 times since Wed, Feb 9, 2011
Post Central Line Insertion Chest X Ray
Viewed 7520 times since Wed, Feb 23, 2011
Nuclear Medicine 78452 Followup
Viewed 4430 times since Wed, Feb 9, 2011
Excision of Keratosis
Viewed 1732 times since Wed, Nov 17, 2010
Soft Tissue Ultrasound
Viewed 5885 times since Wed, Nov 17, 2010
MRI Bilateral Hips
Viewed 4831 times since Sat, Aug 27, 2011
Quorum Health Resources, LLC :: 105 Continental Place Brentwood, TN 37027 :: Phone: (615) 371-4506