Q&A: Radiation Coding


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Q: A breast cancer receives a modified radical mastectomy and is referred for subsequent radiation therapy. The patient receives 5000 cgy in 25 fxs to the left chest wall and 1000 cgy in 5 fxs as a boost to the chest wall scar. What is the code for the radiation treatment volume?

A: Code 20 Chest Wall. Per FORDS page 240, code 20 encompasses the chest wall (following a mastectomy). If regional lymph nodes were included within the treatment, then code 21 would be the correct choice.