incision and drainage cpt

Incision And Drainage CPT 10060 & CPT 10061 | Descriptions & Billing Guidelines

CPT 10060 and CPT 10061 can be billed for simple or complicated/multiple incisions and drainage (I&D) of abscesses.

1. Billing Simple Or Complicated I&Ds

Be aware that there are specific incision and drainage procedure codes available. Check them first before you bill CPT code 10060 or CPT code 10061.

For example: An abscess on the eyelid of a patient can be billed with CPT 67700, a perirectal abscess with CPT 46040, and an abscess of the finger with CPT 26010 or CPT 26011.

Make sure the medical records show that the patient had an abscess before billing CPT 10060 or CPT 10061.

For example: A patient is diagnosed with an abscessed paronychia on the toe (L03. 039 Cellulitis of unspecified toe). The records need to show that the patient suffers from an abscessed paronychia.

You can not report CPT 10060 or CPT 10062 if the record does not show that the patient had an abscess on their toe. You should report CPT 11730 or CPT 11732 instead.

2. What Is CPT Code 10060?

10060 covers the drainage and collection of the contents of an abscess. The provider incises the area before collecting the pus.

Examples of lesions drained with surgical instruments are a;

  • a paronychia;
  • a furuncle;
  • a cyst;
  • hidradenitis; or
  • a carbuncle.

The 10060 CPT code procedure is relatively easy because it usually only involves a single incision below the skin’s surface.

2.1 Description

The CPT book describes the CPT code 10060 as follows: “Incision and drainage of abscess (e.g., carbuncle, suppurative hidradenitis, cutaneous or subcutaneous abscess, cyst, furuncle, or paronychia); simple or single.”

2.2 Procedure

The 10060 CPT code procedure starts with anesthetizing and prepping a patient before the provider makes a circumferential incision over the lesion area.

Then, they incise the patient’s skin until the abscess cavity and remove the inflamed fatty and dead tissues within. The open lesion is drained completely until there is no pus anymore.

Finally, the provider ends the procedure but leaves the wound open so the body can continue to discharge fluids. The wound can be covered with cotton cloths and may use gauze to pack the abscess cavity.

2.3 Billing Guidelines

CPT 10060 can only be billed for a simple or single capsule-like cyst drainage. You may use CPT 10061 instead for complicated I&D or multiple I&Ds.

Bill CPT 10080 instead of CPT 10060 for incision and drainage (I&D) of;

  • wound infections
  • foreign bodies;
  • hematomas; or
  • pilonidal cysts.

3. What Is CPT Code 10061?

10061 can be used for abscesses that require multiple or complicated incisions and drainage and aim to treat;

  • a paronychia;
  • a furuncle;
  • a cyst;
  • hidradenitis; or
  • a carbuncle.

The provider incises the area with surgical instruments to collect the pus and drain the abscess.

A complicated drainage and collection procedure involves ;

  • complicated wound closure;
  • extensive packing;
  • drain placements; and
  • multiple incisions.

3.1 Description

The CPT book describes the CPT code 10061 as: “Incision and drainage of abscess (e.g., carbuncle, suppurative hidradenitis, cutaneous or subcutaneous abscess, cyst, furuncle, or paronychia); complicated or multiple.”

3.2 Procedure

The provider starts the 10061 procedure with a circumferential incision over the abscess area. Then, they deepen the incision and cut through the skin’s vascular inner layer until the abscess cavity’s deepest level.

They continue the procedure by cutting out the dead and inflamed fatty tissue and draining the abscess of pus.

If the procedure is successful, the wound might be left open so the body can discharge left-over fluids.

Next, the provider continues with other lesions and repeats the previous procedure. Some of these lesions can require drain placements for continuous drainage.

3.3 Billing Guidelines

Bill CPT code 10061 only if drainage and collecting the pus take more extensive incisions and/or a more complicated closure. You can bill CPT 10060 for a simple I&D procedure.

Bill CPT 10081 instead of 10061 in the procedure involves complicated I&D for;

  • wound infections;
  • foreign bodies;
  • hematomas; or
  • pilonidal cysts.

4. References

CPT Professional 2022

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