Coding Complex Cataract Surgery – Suzanne Corcoran, COE
In 2001, the Health Care Financing Administration added CPT code 66982 to describe complex cataract surgery. Today, the code description (modified in 2002) reads, “Extracapsular cataract removal with insertion of intraocular lens prosthesis (one stage procedure), manual or mechanical technique (e.g., irrigation and aspiration or phacoemulsification), complex, requiring devices or techniques not generally used in routine cataract surgery (e.g., iris expansion device, suture support for intraocular lens, or primary posterior capsulorrhexis) or performed on patients in the amblyogenic developmental stage.” The national Medicare payment rate for the surgeon for 66982 in 2004 is $899. Reimbursement is about 31% higher than the Medicare rate for regular cataract surgery with IOL (66984).
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