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You are watching: Cpt code for chest tube placement

by David Zielske, MD, CIRCC, COC, CCVTC, CCC, CCS, RCC

Code 32551 vs code 32557


IR chest pipe placement.

Indication: huge symptomatic appropriate pneumothorax status post CT-guided lung biopsy.

Technique: The patient was inserted supine top top the fluoroscopy table. The right hemithorax to be prepped and draped in a sterile fashion. The fifth and sixth rib interspace was localized with fluoroscopy, and 1% lidocaine was used for regional anesthesia. A chef pneumothorax 9 French drainage catheter was placed into the appropriate pleural room using a trocar under straight fluoroscopic surveillance. The drain was then connected to a Heimlich valve, and great reexpansion of the best lung was accomplished after the patience coughed. Postprocedural images show a small residual right apical pneumothorax through the drainage catheter overlying the anterior midlung zone.

Impression: successful placement that 9 French chest tube v satisfactory re-expansion of the appropriate lung.


Code 32557 defines the location of one indwelling catheter into the pleural space with imaging guidance because that drainage of air (pneumothorax), liquid or infection, and also covers this procedure. Code 32551 is because that “OPEN” chest tube placement, commonly by a surgeon, through a large, usually around 30Fr or so chest tube.


David Zielske, MD, CIRCC, COC, CCVTC, CCC, CCS, RCC David Zielske is founder and also President the ZHealth Publishing and also primary author and editor that ZHealth publications. Dr. Z practiced as an interventional radiologist and also has over 20 years experience as a coding reviewer and also coding expert. He is board Certified in Radiology and also has worked as an live independence interventional radiology, vascular surgery, and also cardiovascular coding consultant to a variety of physician groups and hospital providers across the country. He additionally served as an instructor because that over 200 coding seminars.

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