Ultimate tips for CPT code 73721


There are many codes used in radiology and hence it is difficult to know each CPT code. As a coder, you should be able to find out exact code for CT, MRI or ultrasound in radiology. MRI code like CPT code 73721 should be only coded when a MRI joint exam is performed in lower extremity. Same we different CPT code for non-joints which are used only for non-joint MRI exam. Now, as we start learn and coding we must get few questions about code CPT code 73721. For me as a coder initially, I had lot of questions from the beginning. So today we will check when and how to use Radiology MRI codes in Medical Coding.
Ultimate tips for CPT code 73721


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 When to Use MRI CPT Code 73721


MRI exam for joint in lower extremity is performed using without intravenous contrast or with intravenous contrast. We have separate code for without (CPT code73721) and with intravenous contrast (CPT Code73722) and also both with and without intravenous contrast (CPT code 73723). Here we do not have codes for Complete or limited exam for renal ultrasound or X-ray exam of chest based on views. Here we have codes arranged as per the use of intravenous contrast. These codes also fall under 70000 series. Do not bundle or unbundle procedure if we have direct CPT code. For example, does not code for MRI joint without and with intravenous contrast (73723) separately as without (CPT code 73721) followed by with intravenous contrast CPT code (CPT code 73722). Such claims will be denied.

Do and Don’t about CPT code 73721


Do use LT and RT modifier along with CPT code 73721.

Do use modifier 59 or XP, XU, XS, XE when the exam is performed on different joint. For example, MRI joint exam done on ankle and knee in different encounter, hence we will use CPT code 73721 twice with use of XS modifier (different structure).

Do not use MRI joint Lower extremity for MRI non-joint lower extremities. For example, does not use CPT code 73721 for MRI foot without contrast, which is a non-joint and hence we will use 73718 in such cases.


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