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Report Produced: 01/26/2023 20:50 PM

Report Question ID Question (Ascending) Discussion Answer
20021059 Surgery of Primary Site--Soft Tissue: What code is used to represent this field when an excisional biopsy of a soft tissue sarcoma is followed two weeks later with a wide excision (re-excision)? For cases diagnosed 1/1/2003 and after: Code the Surgery of Primary Site field to 26 [partial resection]. According to the CoC, "Excision" in the surgery codes refers to the lesion and "partial resection" refers to the organ. The biopsy is a local excision (code 25). The wide resection is code 26, presuming that more than just the remaining lesion was removed.
20081011 Surgery of Primary Site/CS Reg LN Exam/Scope Regional LN Surgery--Rectum: How are these fields coded when a patient develops a non-tumor related complication that requires an additional sigmoid resection that removes 2 additional lymph nodes one week following a low anterior resection that removed 4 lymph nodes? See Discussion. Patient had a low-lying rectal cancer that was biopsied and then treated with radiation and chemo followed by a low anterior resection. Four nodes were removed. There was no residual tumor. The patient returned one week later due to a rectal bleed, thought to be an abscess. During surgical exploration it was found that the anastomosis had broken down and it was decided to do a sigmoid colectomy. Residual disease was not suspected. Two additional nodes were removed.

Surgery of primary site: Assign code 30 [low anterior resection]. Code the most extensive surgery (i.e. the highest surgery code) applicable.

CS Reg LN Exam: Code 04 [four nodes removed].

Scope of regional lymph node surgery: Code 5 [4 or more regional lymph nodes removed].

The sigmoid colectomy was performed for a surgical complication, thus it was not cancer-directed therapy. The regional lymph nodes removed during that procedure were not removed to diagnose cancer or stage the disease, and they were not removed during the initial treatment. Please see SEER manual for instructions for coding Regional Lymph Node Surgery.

20000461 Surgery of Primary Site/Date Therapy Initiated--Cervix: Should "negative endocervical curettings" be coded as surgical treatment for carcinoma in situ of the cervix primaries and should the date of the procedure ever be used in coding the Date Therapy Initiated field? For cases diagnosed 1/1/2003 and later: Code Surgery of Primary Site to 25 [D&C; endocervical curettage (for in situ only)]. If this is the first treatment given, the Date Therapy Initiated is coded to the date of the curettage.
20031198 Surgery of Primary Site/Date Therapy Initiated--Head & Neck: Would a biopsy, NOS, that removed the majority of the tumor be used to code these fields? See Description. Patient underwent biopsy, NOS, of a carcinoma of the tongue. Subsequent glossectomy revealed microscopic focus of residual squamous cell carcinoma. If the biopsy NOS removed all macroscopic disease, code the date of the biopsy NOS as the date therapy initiated. If macroscopic disease remained following the biopsy NOS, code the glossectomy date as the date therapy initiated.
20021103 Surgery of Primary Site/First Course Treatment--Liver: If disease progression is so rapid that the initial therapy plan is changed before patient receives any therapy, would "no therapy" be the first course? See discussion. Patient was diagnosed with liver cancer on 8/23 and on 9/6 a hepatectomy was recommended. However, patient was hospitalized on 9/19 with ascites. Patient underwent embolization instead of a hepatectomy during that admission.

Code the "embolization" (or hepatic artery embolization, HAE) in Surgery of Primary Site. Assign code 10 [local tumor destruction, NOS].

The embolization is coded as first course of therapy for this case because it seems that this patient was not adequately staged until 9/19 -- there is no indication on this case of the stage of disease in August or early September. Furthermore, no treatment was started before the embolization. Therefore, the ascites is not "progression of disease" in this case -- it is taken into account as part of the initial stage of disease.

This procedure was previously coded as other therapy, experimental. Code as surgery as of July 2005.

20031134 Surgery of Primary Site/Immunotherapy--Bladder: Is administration of BCG coded as both surgery and immunotherapy? Yes, code as both surgery and immunotherapy. The CoC included immunotherapy/BCG under surgery and also under immunotherapy by request of the clinical advisor for bladder, reflecting the mixed-modality nature of the treatments. [Answer from CoC I & R]
20021180 Surgery of Primary Site/Other Cancer-Directed Therapy--Head & Neck (Nasal cavity): Should a small fragment of bone removed during a maxillectomy following a turbinectomy for a nasal turbinate primary be considered "partial or total removal with other organ" for coding this field? See discussion. Excision of a turbinate mass and partial turbinectomy revealed melanoma of the rt nasal turbinate. A subsequent rt medial maxillectomy was performed and a small fragment of bone was included in the resection and identified in the pathology report. Would the removed bone be considered "connective or supportive tissue" only for a Surgery of Primary Site code of 40 or should it be considered another organ for a code of 60? The piece of bone was likely removed to access the maxillary sinus and would not be considered a separate organ. Use the "All Other Sites" surgery coding schemes to code this primary. For cases diagnosed 1/1/2003 and after: Code the Surgery of Primary Site field to 40 [Total surgical removal of primary site]. Code the Surgical Procedure of Other Site field to 2 [Non-primary surgical procedure to other regional sites]. The maxillectomy was not performed in continuity to the turbinectomy and should be coded in this field rather than the Surgery of Primary Site field.
20000421 Surgery of Primary Site/Reconstruction-First Course--Breast: If the plan is to "reconstruct" the breast 6 months after an ipsilateral modified radical mastectomy, is the time span a problem or should it be coded in the Surgery of Primary Site field because it was planned? For cases diagnosed 1/1/2003 and after: Code the Surgery of Primary Site field to 55 [Modified radical mastectomy WITHOUT removal of uninvolved contralateral breast, Implant]. The time span is not a problem as long as the reconstruction was planned as first course, which is indicated by tissue expander insertion at the time of the original surgery.
20120019 Surgery of Primary Site/Scope Regional LN Surgery--Breast: How are these fields coded for breast cases diagnosed 2011 and later when the patient has a simple mastectomy with removal of seven sentinel lymph nodes? See Discussion. Per SINQ 20091076, the correct codes would be 41 [simple mastectomy] and 2 [sentinel lymph node biopsy only] when the patient has any number of sentinel nodes removed, as long as they are designated as sentinel nodes. Under the mastectomy codes in the 2011 SEER Manual, Appendix C, Breast Surgery Codes, the SEER Note states that code 41 [simple mastectomy] includes the removal of one to three axillary lymph nodes. A simple mastectomy with four or more axillary lymph nodes is coded to 51. Does the lymph node count for code 51 include both sentinel and axillary lymph nodes? Or does code 51 refer to strictly the count of axillary lymph nodes, separate from the count of sentinel lymph node(s) biopsied?

First, make sure that the seven lymph nodes removed were actually designated to be sentinel nodes and not a combination of sentinel nodes and other regional nodes. Code sentinel nodes only when the nodes are stated to be sentinel nodes or when the surgical procedure includes the injection of dye to identify sentinel nodes.

If all seven nodes removed are sentinel nodes, follow the instructions in SINQ 20091076 and assign codes 41 [simple mastectomy] and 2 [sentinel lymph node biopsy only].

The SEER Note does not pertain to nodes designated as sentinel nodes.

20091076 Surgery of Primary Site/Scope Regional LN Surgery--Breast: How should these fields be coded when a sentinel lymph node dissection removes one-to-three axillary lymph nodes and a total/simple mastectomy is done? Assign code 41 [Total (simple) mastectomy, NOS WITHOUT removal of uninvolved contralateral breast] for Surgery of Primary Site. Assign code 2 [Sentinel lymph node biopsy] for Scope of Regional Lymph Node surgery. Code 41 applies to a total/simple mastectomy with any number of sentinel lymph nodes removed -- as long as all of the nodes removed are designated as sentinel nodes.