NG Tube FAQ

FAQ 1:  Can I code for NG/OG tube placement done by the physician?

For simple placement of a NG/OG tube by a physician for aspiration/lavage (e.g. poisonings, GI bleeds) code 43753 (Gastric intubation, and aspiration(s) therapeutic, necessitating physician's skill (e.g., for gastrointestinal hemorrhage), including lavage if performed) is used. 

When fluoroscopy is used, the appropriate code to report for this service would be CPT code 43752, naso- or oro-gastric tube placement, requiring physician's skill and fluoroscopic guidance. 

For both of these codes, it will be necessary to document a procedure note describing the reason a physician's skill was required and, if applicable, evidence reporting that fluoroscopy was used.

Both of the above codes for this procedure are bundled into critical care (99291) and should not be coded separately if performed during the critical care episode.

Disclaimer

The American College of Emergency Physicians (ACEP) has developed the Reimbursement & Coding FAQs and Pearls for informational purposes only.   The FAQs and Pearls have been developed by sources knowledgeable in their fields, reviewed by a committee, and are intended to describe current coding practice. However, ACEP cannot guarantee that the information contained in the FAQs and Pearls is in every respect accurate, complete, or up to date. The FAQs and Pearls are provided "as is" without warranty of any kind, either express or implied, including but not limited to, the implied warranties of merchantability and fitness for a particular purpose. Payment policies can vary from payer to payer. ACEP, its committee members, authors or editors assume no responsibility for, and expressly disclaim liability for, damages of any kind arising out of or relating to any use, non-use, interpretation of, or reliance on information contained or not contained in the FAQs and Pearls. In no event shall ACEP be liable for direct, indirect, special, incidental, or consequential damages arising out of the use of such information or material. Specific coding or payment related issues should be directed to the payer. For information about this FAQ/ Pearl, or to provide feedback, please contact David A. McKenzie, CAE, Reimbursement Director, ACEP at (972) 550-0911, Ext. 3233 or dmckenzie@acep.org.

Updated 04/2014

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