A woman walks up to the pharmacy counter – STOP

I know it’s not as funny as the ole ‘A man walks into a bar, … ‘ lead in.  But for those of us in this damn thing I call a profession, you know whatever follows is going to be humorous.  CONTINUE

Anyway, this woman stated that she had just been diagnosed with – wait for it non-allergic sinusitis.  Sorry, that really didn’t warrant a -wait for it – by Barney Stinson standards.  In fact, it wasn’t funny at all.  However, it IS the perfect introduction for this post.

legen – …

ICD Diagnosis code

Diagnostic coding is the translation of written descriptions of diseases, illnesses and injuries into codes from a particular classification.

The International Statistical Classification of Diseases and Related Health Problems (commonly known as the ICD) provides alpha-numeric codes to classify diseases and a wide variety of signs, symptoms, abnormal findings, complaints, social circumstances and external causes of injury or disease. Nearly every health condition can be assigned to a unique category and given a code, up to six characters long. Such categories usually include a set of similar diseases.

When leaving a doctor’s office, each patient usually receives a summary of the visit.  Beside each symptom communicated to the provider, a code is entered as is a technical description with lots of big words no one can pronounce. Finally, this code is what the insurance companies require for billing.   For many years, ICD-9 was the standard.  With new disease states and complications, it’s been revised.

ICD 10 CM has been updated to reflect the current clinical understanding and technological advancements of medicine, and the code descriptions are designed to provide a more consistent level of detail. It contains a more extensive vocabulary of clinical concepts, body part specificity, patient encounter information, and other components from which codes are built.

In other words, it’s pretty detailed.  Just check out E 10 and only two of it’s subcategories.

everyday examples

A63 –   Other predominantly sexually transmitted diseases, not elsewhere classified –  translation:  Your dick is going to fall off.

E 10 – Type 1 diabetes mellitus

  • E10.3 – Type 1 diabetes mellitus with ophthalmic complications
  • E10.3212 – Type 1 diabetes mellitus with mild nonproliferative diabetic retinopathy with macular edema LEFT EYE

F99 – unspecified mental disorder – NOT the customer type you want to frequent your store

K21 – Gastro-esophageal reflux disease (gerd) – heartburn

M77.11 – Lateral epicondylitis, right elbow – translation: tennis elbowtake some ibuprofen and shut the fuck up, bitch

N52 –    Male erectile dysfunction  Viagra anyone?

Z00 – Encounter for general examination without complaint, suspected or reported diagnosis – reserved  for hypochondriacs  


Thankfully, this woman didn’t include the code when she rattled off her ailment.  Trust me, some have.  Then, it’s usually followed by a prescription for Xanax in a futile attempt to curb that ‘obsessive’ behavior.

I’ve decided people need to have a label for their symptoms whether their issues are real or imagined, which many of them are.  Of course,  ICD wasn’t designed for this twisted purpose of validating unnecessary  ‘drama’.  Still, it does aid the medical professional when communicating with patients.

All this being said, I’m going to end with a Stin(t) from the Barnacle himself.  This has absolutely nothing to do with the post, but I suffer from V07. 1965.


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