CPT Code 17270 | Description & Clinical Information

CPT 17270 describes the destruction of a malignant lesion on the scalp, neck, hands, feet, or genitalia that is 0.5 cm or less in diameter using various techniques such as chemosurgery, cryosurgery, electrosurgery, or other methods.

Official Description

The CPT book defines CPT code 17270 as: “Destruction, malignant lesion (eg, laser surgery, electrosurgery, cryosurgery, chemosurgery, surgical curettement), scalp, neck, hands, feet, genitalia; lesion diameter 0.5 cm or less”.

Clinical Information

The procedure described by CPT code 17270 is a method for destroying small malignant lesions that are 0.5 cm or less in diameter and are located on the scalp, neck, hands, feet, or genitalia. The process involves the use of various methods for lesion destruction, including exposing the targeted lesion to a laser beam, high-frequency electrical current, or chemical agents. Additionally, medical providers may also use liquid nitrogen or a surgical curette (a scraping instrument) to destroy the lesion.

Before the procedure, the patient must be properly prepped. The provider may choose to administer anesthesia, such as local anesthesia, to ensure patient comfort during the procedure. This can help to alleviate any discomfort or pain that may occur during the destruction of the lesion.

The use of a laser beam is one of the most common methods for lesion destruction. The laser emits an intense beam of light that penetrates the skin, which then destroys the targeted lesion without damaging the surrounding tissue. This method is relatively quick and efficient, making it an ideal option for small lesions.

High-frequency electrical current is another method for lesion destruction. It involves the use of electrical energy to destroy the targeted area. This process is also able to destroy the lesion without damaging the surrounding tissue. However, it may take longer than the laser method.

Chemical agents can also be used to destroy the lesion. This method involves the application of a chemical agent to the targeted area, which will destroy the lesion. One of the primary benefits of this method is that it allows for selective destruction of the lesion, as the chemical agent only affects the targeted area.

In some cases, medical providers may use liquid nitrogen to destroy the lesion. Liquid nitrogen is an extremely cold substance that, when applied to the lesion, will cause it to freeze and subsequently destroy it. However, this method may take longer than the others.

Lastly, medical providers may use a surgical curette, which is a scraping instrument used to remove the lesion. This method is only used for lesions that are extremely small or those that are located in areas that are difficult to treat using other methods.

In conclusion, CPT code 17270 is a procedure that is commonly used for the destruction of small malignant lesions. The method involves using various methods to destroy the targeted lesion, including lasers, high-frequency electrical current, chemical agents, liquid nitrogen, and surgical curettes. Proper preparation of the patient and the use of anesthesia are essential to ensure patient comfort during the procedure. Ultimately, the provider will choose the best method for lesion destruction based on the size and location of the lesion.

Return to all the CPT codes for destruction procedures on malignant lesions of the integumentary system.

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