Outsource Strategies International (OSI) in an experienced medical billing company in U.S., providing medical billing, coding and insurance verification services for medical practices, clinics, group practices, and dental specialties.

In today’s podcast, Natalie Tornese, one of our Senior Solutions Managers will discuss clearly the common skin conditions and related ICD-10 coding.

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Hello everyone and welcome to our podcast series!

My name is Natalie Tornese and I’m a Senior Solutions Manager at Outsource Strategies International (OSI).

I wanted to take this opportunity to talk about common skin conditions and go over some of the ICD-10 coding.

Skin problems can be a major concern, whether it is a mild allergic reaction or other conditions which are far more serious. Regarded as the body’s biggest organ, the skin shields you from different outside elements and requires lots of care and attention. Several factors like allergens, immune system disorders, medications, infections, environmental irritants and other genetic and stress factors can contribute to the development of skin conditions, which make the root cause of the problem hard to pinpoint. In some cases, even with proper skin care, multiple skin disorders can occur on the skin. Skin disorders vary greatly in symptoms and severity and can be either temporary or permanent and may be even painless or painful. Chronic skin conditions cannot be fully cured, but they can affectively be managed by using medications and paying close attention to your lifestyle. To diagnose skin conditions, physicians typically consider a person’s medical history and symptoms. They will assess the shape, size, location, color of bumps, blisters and rashes and can help pinpoint the exact cause. Consulting a dermatologist is the best way to gain improved understanding about the most common skin conditions, and to find the best treatment. Dermatologists or other physicians treating common skin conditions need to use the correct ICD-10 codes to report the correct diagnoses.

I will include a transcript along with this podcast outlining the associated ICD-10 codes along with the conditions I’m going to discuss.

There are different types of skin conditions that affect people. The most common skin condition can have similar symptoms. Skin irregularities that are typically symptoms of a skin disorder can include –

  • Raised bumps that are red or white
  • Scaly or rough skin
  • Peeling skin
  • Painful or itchy rashes
  • Fleshy bumps, warts, or other skin growths
  • Dry, cracked skin
  • Discolored patches of skin or
  • A loss of skin pigment

Acne is regarded as the most common skin disorder in the U.S., which affects about 17 million Americans. It is caused by a blocked hair follicle and oil sebaceous glands of the skin. It is often triggered by hormonal changes. Commonly located on the face, neck, shoulders, chest, and upper back, acne can affect people with any skin type – at any age. Breakouts can appear in the form of pimples, whiteheads, blackheads, or even painful nodules and cysts. If left untreated or not treated correctly, acne can leave scars or dark spots on the skin. Topical treatments and other medicines can help unclog the pores and prevent new breakouts.

Atopic Dermatitis is a chronic skin disorder characterized by itchy and red skin. Also known as eczema, this skin condition is more common among children. However, it can occur at any age. Common symptoms of this include – dry, itchy skin and red rashes that can occur on any part of the body. In affected infants, the rashes commonly appear on the face, cheeks, scalps, arms and legs. But they can also occur on the wrists, ankles, eyelids, front side of the neck and the bend side of the elbows and knees. One of the main causes of this condition is the presence of too many inflammatory cells in the skin. There is no specific cure for this inflammatory skin condition, but a combination of treatment methods that include medicines, skin care, and lifestyle changes may be opted for. Therapies include - Wet dressings and phototherapy, medications and other therapies that can control itching, clear the infection, minimize skin inflammation, loosen and remove scaly lesions and reduce new lesions from forming.

Rosacea is a common inflammatory skin condition. It can cause redness and visible blood vessels on the face. The redness can slowly spread beyond the nose and cheeks to the forehead and chin. Rosacea consists of four different sub types and the exact cause of each condition is not fully known but a number of factors can trigger symptoms. Common symptoms include - facial redness, swollen red bumps, visible broken blood vessels, large pores and excess facial skin around the nose. The condition most commonly affects the middle-aged women in the age group of 30 - 60 years old, who have fair skin. However, when it occurs in men, the condition tends to be severe and may eventually cause the nose to become enlarged. Treatment modalities may involve a combination of prescribed medications (applied to the skin) and oral drugs.

Hives also known as urticaria, hives are red, raised, itchy skin rashes that are sometimes triggered by an allergen. Due to an allergic reaction, the body releases a protein called histamine. When histamine is released, the tiny blood vessels known as capillaries leak fluid, which accumulates in the skin causing a rash. Swellings, known as wheals, appear as rashes on the skin. These rashes are usually pink or red, with an oval or round shape. Hives are usually temporary, but in some people can develop chronic hives. Treatment for this condition includes non-sedating antihistamines which can help block or reduce the body's allergic response and ease the itching. In severe or chronic cases, patients may be prescribed corticosteroids or stronger drugs.

Psoriasis is the most prevalent, chronic autoimmune disease that causes rapid build-up of skin cells. This over growth of cells on the skin can lead to thick, scaly plaques that may itch or cause discomfort. This condition affects about 8 million people in the U.S. Although the exact cause of the condition is not fully known, it is thought to be largely related to an immune system problem and even genetics. Psoriasis can begin at any age, though the disease typically manifests in adulthood. Symptoms include – dry/cracked skin that may bleed, small scaling spots, swollen and stiff joints, soreness/itching and burning sensation around the patches, thick pitted nails and painful or swollen joints. Treatment modalities include – systemic medications, topical therapies and light therapy.

I hope this helps. But always remember that documentation and a thorough knowledge of payer regulations and guidelines is critical to ensure accurate reimbursement for the procedures performed.

Thank you for listening!