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The individuals who appear are for illustrative purposes. All persons depicted are models and not real healthcare professionals. US-N/A-2400043 05/24

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2020 CPT coding changes for planar, SPECT and SPECT/CT imaging


I have a question regarding the 2020 CPT® coding changes for nuclear medicine. I see the following changes (summarized): 

Description changes:
78800 – Planar, single area, single day
78801 – Planar, Multiple areas
78802 – Planar, Whole Body, single day
78803 – SPECT, single area, single day
78804 – Planar, Whole Body, 2 + days
New CPT codes:
78830 – SPECT/CT, single area, single day
78831 – SPECT, multiple areas
78832 – SPECT/CT, multiple areas
78835 – Radiopharmaceutical quantification measurement

However, I can’t find a code that would be appropriate for a multiple day, single site, planar study. For example, if a patient is scanned with Gallium for an inflammatory process, because of a fever of unknown origin or sarcoidosis of the chest – the patient is having a single site, planar imaging study over multiple days. How do I code that? 


You need to look at the complete descriptors. You would assign CPT code 78801. 

It is planar imaging, multiple areas – 1-day imaging ​or​ single area imaging – 2 or more days. The code and complete description are:

78801​ Radiopharmaceutical localization to tumor, inflammatory process or distribution of radiopharmaceutical agent(s) (includes vascular flow and blood pool imaging, when performed); planar, 2 or more areas (eg, abdomen and pelvis, head and chest), 1 or more days imaging or single area imaging over 2 or more days.