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What does ICD mean?

Understanding diagnosis codes and how they are used

ICD stands for: International Classification of Diseases


ICD is a coding set used to identify diseases, conditions, accidents, signs & symptoms, and complaints. The current version of the ICD coding set is ICD-10. ICD codes are maintained by World Health Organization (WHO). ICD codes are updated periodically (generally yearly), going into effect on October 1 each year. ICD codes are different than CPT (procedure) codes and HCPCS (equipment & supply) codes.

Each medical claim requires at least 1 ICD code as the "reason" the services are being performed, but up to 12 can be entered. ICD codes are entered into field 21 of the CMS1500 medical claim form:

Below are some examples of ICD codes commonly used in medical billing in dentistry:

G47.33 - Obstructive Sleep Apnea (adult)(pediatric)

K08.23 - Severe atrophy of the mandible

K08.26 - Severe atrophy of the maxilla

K12.2 - Cellulitis and abscess of mouth

M26.631 - Articular disc disorder of right temporomandibular joint

M26.632 - Articular disc disorder of left temporomandibular joint

M26.633 - Articular disc disorder of bilateral temporomandibular joint

W01.0XXA - Fall on same level from slipping, tripping and stumbling without subsequent striking against object, initial encounter

W01.10XA - Fall on same level from slipping, tripping and stumbling with subsequent striking against unspecified object, initial encounter