World Parkinson’s Day (also referred to as World Parkinson’s Disease Day or World Parkinson’s Awareness Day) is observed on April 11 every year. The day (which marks the birthday of Dr. J. Parkinson – an English surgeon, apothecary, geologist, paleontologist, and political activist) aims to raise awareness about Parkinson disease (PD) – a chronic and progressive disorder of the nervous system. Sponsored by the European Parkinson’s Disease Association, this one-day event aims to promote a better understanding about this neurological disorder and how it can affect a person.

World Parkinsons Day

Parkinson’s disease is a neurodegenerative disorder, which involves progressive damage of the brain over many years. This condition leads to progressive deterioration of motor function due to loss of dopamine-producing brain cells. The initial signs and symptoms of PD may vary from person to person. In most cases, early signs may be mild and may go unnoticed. Although this neurological condition can’t be cured, medications can dramatically reduce or improve the symptoms. In some cases, surgery may be recommended to regulate certain regions of the brain and improve the symptoms. Neurologists are specialized in diagnosing, treating, and managing disorders of the brain and nervous system such as Parkinson’s disease. Coding for PD can be a challenging process and for correct clinical documentation of this condition, physicians can benefit from the services of medical billing outsourcing companies.

Reports from Parkinson’s News Today suggest that more than 10 million people worldwide suffer from this chronic neurological disorder. It is estimated that approximately 60,000 Americans are diagnosed with PD each year. Symptoms often begin on one side of your body and usually remain worse on that side, even after symptoms begin to affect both sides. Generally, this condition develops gradually, (beginning with a barely noticeable tremor in just one hand). On the other hand, it can also cause stiffness or slowing of movement. Some of the other common signs and symptoms include – slowed movement (bradykinesia), rigid muscles, speech changes, impaired posture and balance, loss of automatic movements and writing changes. The 2018 campaign aims to educate the general public about the symptoms and risk factors associated with this condition and diagnose it during the early stages or even prevent it if possible.

There is no specific test to diagnose Parkinson’s disease. Based on patient medical history, neurologists will conduct a detailed review of symptoms along with a neurological and physical examination. Several imaging tests such as MRI, ultrasound of the brain, SPECT and PET scans and blood tests may be performed to analyze symptoms and rule out other disorders. Treatment methods include medications and incorporating several positive lifestyle changes. Medications will help people manage problems with walking, movement and tremor. These medications also increase or substitute for dopamine, a specific signaling chemical (neurotransmitter) in the brain.

Neurologists offering treatment for PD are reimbursed for their services. The diagnosis, screening tests and other procedures must be carefully documented using appropriate medical codes. A professional medical coding company can ensure this. Clinical documentation must also mention the specific type of Parkinson’s disease. ICD-10-CM code G20 is a specific code that can be used to specify a diagnosis.

Parkinson’s disease G20 is applicable to –

  • Hemiparkinsonism
  • Idiopathic Parkinsonism or Parkinson’s disease
  • Paralysis agitans
  • Parkinsonism or Parkinson’s disease NOS
  • Primary Parkinsonism or Parkinson’s disease

ICD-10 Codes for Parkinson’s Disease (PD)

G20 – Parkinson’s disease

G21 – Secondary parkinsonism

  • G21.0 – Malignant neuroleptic syndrome

G21.1 – Other drug-induced secondary parkinsonism

  • G21.11 – Neuroleptic induced parkinsonism
  • G21.19 – Other drug induced secondary parkinsonism
  • G21.2 – Secondary parkinsonism due to other external agents
  • G21.3 – Postencephalitic parkinsonism
  • G21.4 – Vascular parkinsonism
  • G21.8 – Other secondary parkinsonism
  • G21.9 – Secondary parkinsonism, unspecified

Exclusion specific to G20: ‘Dementia with Parkinsonism’ is not included in the above set and has to be coded using G31.83.

World Parkinson’s Awareness Day is the ideal occasion to spread awareness about this degenerative disorder of the central nervous system, reach out to more people affected by the condition and raise funds for vital research into better treatments. As part of the one-day campaign, hospitals, healthcare centers, and other types of medical facilities across the world will host seminars, discussions, and presentations and share information on social media to raise public awareness about PD.

Join the campaign for Parkinson’s disease. Spread more awareness about this chronic neurological disorder.