What are the ICD-10 Codes for Muscular Dystrophy?

by | Published on Mar 10, 2023 | Medical Billing, Medical Coding

Billing and Coding for Muscular Dystrophy
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Muscular dystrophy is a group of diseases that causes severe progressive damage, weakness and loss of muscle mass over time. The damage and weakness in muscle mass may occur due to a lack of protein (called dystrophin) which is essential for typical muscle function. Neurology medical billing and coding can be challenging. When it comes to reporting symptoms and diagnoses of different types of muscular dystrophies, neurologists can depend on medical billing and coding companies. Such companies will have skilled professionals who are well-versed in the coding and claim submission process.

There are different types of muscular dystrophies and the symptoms of the most common types become evident in early childhood. The outlook for this condition depends on the specific type of muscular dystrophy and the severity of symptoms. There is no specific cure for muscular dystrophy. But certain medications and therapies can help manage symptoms and slow the course of the disease.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), muscular dystrophies affect about 32 in 100,000 people in the United States (2021 statistics). Muscular dystrophy occurs when the genes (that make proteins that protect muscle fibers) becomes defective. Each form of muscular dystrophy is caused by a genetic mutation particular to that type of the disease. In fact, most of these mutations are inherited. As mentioned above, there are different types of muscular dystrophies. Duchenne type muscular dystrophy and Becker muscular dystrophy are the two most common types. Progressive muscle weakness is one of the main symptoms of muscular dystrophy. In fact, specific symptoms begin at different ages and in different muscle groups, depending on the type of muscular dystrophy a person suffers. Other symptoms include – frequent falls, difficulty rising from a lying or sitting position, trouble running and jumping, muscle pain and stiffness, learning disabilities and delayed growth.


Diagnosis of muscular dystrophy begins with a medical history review and physical examination. Neurologists may also recommend certain other types of tests like – Enzyme tests, genetic testing, heart-monitoring and lung monitoring tests (electrocardiography, echocardiogram and electromyography) and lung monitoring tests will be performed. Muscle biopsy will also be performed to analyze the tissue sample in order to distinguish muscular dystrophies from other muscle diseases.

ICD-10 Codes for Muscular Dystrophy

ICD-10 code G71.0 denotes Muscular dystrophy.G71.0 Muscular dystrophy is non-specific and non-billable diagnosis code that can be used on the medical claim to indicate a diagnosis for reimbursement purposes.

  • G71 Primary disorders of muscles
  • G71.0 Muscular dystrophy
    • G71.00 …… unspecified
    • G71.01 Duchenne or Becker muscular dystrophy
    • G71.02 Facioscapulohumeral muscular dystrophy
  • G71.03 Limb girdle muscular dystrophies
    • G71.031 Autosomal dominant limb girdle muscular dystrophy
    • G71.032 Autosomal recessive limb girdle muscular dystrophy due to calpain-3 dysfunction
    • G71.033 Limb girdle muscular dystrophy due to dysferlin dysfunction
  • G71.034 Limb girdle muscular dystrophy due to sarcoglycan dysfunction
    • G71.0340 …… unspecified
    • G71.0341 Limb girdle muscular dystrophy due to alpha sarcoglycan dysfunction
    • G71.0342 Limb girdle muscular dystrophy due to beta sarcoglycan dysfunction
    • G71.0349 Limb girdle muscular dystrophy due to other sarcoglycan dysfunction
  • G71.035 Limb girdle muscular dystrophy due to anoctamin-5 dysfunction
  • G71.038 Other limb girdle muscular dystrophy
  • G71.039 Limb girdle muscular dystrophy, unspecified
  • G71.09 Other specified muscular dystrophies
  • G71.1 Myotonic disorders
    • G71.11 Myotonic muscular dystrophy
    • G71.12 Myotonia congenita
    • G71.13 Myotonic chondrodystrophy
    • G71.14 Drug induced myotonia
    • G71.19 Other specified myotonic disorders

Although there is no specific cure for any form of muscular dystrophy, a combination of medications, therapies (physical and occupational) and surgical and other procedures can help improve heart and lung muscle strength. Ongoing assessments related to walking, swallowing, breathing and hand function tests help assess the progress of treatment. In certain severe cases, surgery may be performed to correct contractures or a spinal curvature that could cause breathing difficulties. Heart function may be improved with a pacemaker or other cardiac device.

If left untreated, muscular dystrophy can cause severe complications of progressive muscle weakness including – trouble in walking, trouble in using arms, heart problems, breathing problems, curved spine (scoliosis) and shortening of muscles or tendons around joints (contractures).

For accurate and timely billing and claims submission, healthcare practices can partner with a reliable medical billing and coding company that provides the services of AAPC-certified coding specialists.

Loralee Kapp

Since joining our RCM Division in October 2021, Loralee, who is HIT Certified (Health Information Technology/Health Information Management), brings her extensive expertise in medical coding and Health Information Management practices to OSI.

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