Respiratory failure is a syndrome that occurs when the respiratory system's gas exchange functions - oxygenation and carbon dioxide elimination - fail. The condition occurs when the capillaries, or small blood vessels, are unable to exchange carbon dioxide for oxygen. Acute or chronic respiratory failure can occur. Acute respiratory failure (ARF) occurs when fluid accumulates in your lungs' air sacs, preventing your lungs from releasing oxygen into your blood. In most cases, if not treated promptly, this condition will result in death. The serious complications caused by acute respiratory failure can be reversed with appropriate and timely treatment.
Acute respiratory failure (ARF) could be hypoxemic (low arterial oxygen levels), hypercapnic (high carbon dioxide levels), or a combination of the two. In most situations, one or the other dominates. This respiratory condition is caused by a variety of factors, including obstruction (such as chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) or asthma), injury to the spinal cord, brain, ribs, or chest (which affects the breathing process), acute respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS), drug or alcohol abuse, toxic chemical inhalation, stroke, and other pulmonary infections. In contrast to chronic respiratory failure (a long-term condition), acute respiratory failure occurs suddenly and lasts only a short time.
Documentation is essential for ensuring appropriate care and reimbursement, and medical coding outsourcing is an excellent option for physicians to simplify their documentation process.
How to Diagnose Acute Respiratory Failure with Hypoxia
Acute respiratory failure requires immediate medical conditions. As a result, patients must be given oxygen to help them breathe normally and to prevent tissue death in the brain and other organs. Once the patient's condition has stabilized, doctors can begin the process of fully diagnosing the disease. As part of the initial diagnosis, physicians may perform a thorough physical examination and review the patient's medical history.
Treatment for this condition is typically dependent on the patient's underlying conditions and may include pain medications or other medications that help patients breathe better. If a patient is unable to breathe adequately on their own, oxygen from an oxygen tank may be administered. Tracheostomy (creation of an artificial airway in the windpipe) may be performed on patients who require prolonged ventilator support.
How to Document Acute Respiratory Failure with Hypoxia
Pulmonary medical coding requires documenting the specific ICD-10 diagnosis codes for reporting acute respiratory failure on the medical claims they submit to health insurers for reimbursement.
Acute Respiratory Failure with Hypoxia ICD 10 Codes
J96 – Respiratory failure, not elsewhere classified
J96.0 – Acute respiratory failure
J96.00 – Acute respiratory failure, unspecified whether with hypoxia or hypercapnia
J96.01 – Acute respiratory failure, with hypoxia
J96.02 – Acute respiratory failure, with hypercapnia
J96.2 – Acute and chronic respiratory failure
J96.20 – Acute and chronic respiratory failure, unspecified whether with hypoxia or hypercapnia
J96.21 – Acute and chronic respiratory failure, with hypoxia
J96.22 – Acute and chronic respiratory failure, with hypercapnia
J96.9 – Respiratory failure, unspecified
J96.90 – Respiratory failure, unspecified, unspecified whether with hypoxia or hypercapnia
J96.91 – Respiratory failure, unspecified, with hypoxia
J96.92 – Respiratory failure, unspecified, with hypercapnia
Acute respiratory failure is a condition that can cause long-term lung damage, so it is critical to seek medical attention. Respiratory failure patients can also benefit from pulmonary rehabilitation, which includes exercise therapy, education, and counseling.
Medical coding for respiratory failure can be difficult. Healthcare practises can outsource their medical coding tasks to reliable and certified coding specialists for accurate and timely medical billing and claims submission.