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Topics in Practice Management |

International Classification of Disease Coding for Obstructive Lung Disease: Does It Reflect Appropriate Clinical Documentation?

Philip Marcus, MD, MPH, FCCP; Sidney S. Braman, MD, FCCP
Author and Funding Information

From the Division of Pulmonary Medicine (Dr Marcus), St. Francis Hospital-The Heart Center, Roslyn, NY; and Division of Pulmonary and Critical Care Medicine (Dr Braman), The Alpert Medical School of Brown University and Rhode Island Hospital, Providence, RI.

Correspondence to: Philip Marcus MD, MPH, FCCP, Division of Pulmonary Medicine, St. Francis Hospital-The Heart Center, 100 Port Washington Blvd, Roslyn, NY 11576; e-mail: pmarcus@nyit.edu


Reproduction of this article is prohibited without written permission from the American College of Chest Physicians (www.chestpubs.org/site/misc/reprints.xhtml).


© 2010 American College of Chest Physicians


Chest. 2010;138(1):188-192. doi:10.1378/chest.09-1342
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International Classification of Disease coding is widely used by physicians, hospitals, health-care payers, and governments to assess the health of populations and as a means of reimbursement for medical care based on diagnosis and severity of illness. The current classification system, International Classification of Diseases, 9th ed (ICD-9), will soon be replaced by International Classification of Diseases, 10th ed (ICD-10). When the codes that relate to COPD and asthma are examined, the clinical relevance of the categories in International Classification of Disease coding must be questioned. In the future, a more simplified terminology that is consistent with clinical usage could improve accuracy and ease of coding. At present, however, clinicians should become familiar with the present ICD-9 and future ICD-10 codes so that their descriptions of illnesses in the medical records more accurately reflect current coding terminology.


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