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What are Lumbar Disc Herniation and the ICD 10 Code?

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When people hear lumbar disc herniation or protruding disc, they always get curious to know what exactly lumbar herniation disc means. An inflating disc injury is often a spine injury continuing to your spine’s intervertebral disc. A protruding disc can typically be termed as a slipped disc or a bulging disc. However, when the disc protrudes and is prominent enough for the disc core to come outside through the annulus, it is referred to as a herniated disc.

Now, that you know what disc herniation is, you will probably be itching to see the code for lumbar disc herniation.

M51. 26, billable ICD code, is used to define a diagnosis of another intervertebral disc displacement, the lumbar region. When we say a ‘billable code,’ it means we are saying a detailed enough code used to frame out a specific medical diagnosis.

What Causes A Lumbar Disc Herniation?

A lumbar herniation is a medical jargon used to refer to disc desiccation.  Now, let’s see what causes lumbar disc herniation ICD 10. For most sites, people with herniated disks cannot spot an event that stimulated it all. In simpler words, herniated discs aren’t typically caused by an accident or an event of significant stress on the body. Instead, disk displacement (long-term wear and tear) is the most prominent reason for disc herniation.

Who Has More Risk Of Developing A Herniated Disc?

Disc herniation can bring you a painful condition, but disc displacement takes place in selective people. Here is the list of people who are at risk to develop a herniated disc:

  • Former or current professional athletes (most probably those with increased wear and tear on their spine)
  • People who are 50+ 
  • Adults with physical-involvement jobs (e.g., people who used to work in trades like construction)
  • People who have an unhealthy lifestyle (for instance, poor diet/ nutrition, smokers, drug addicts, or have a history of drug abuse, and so on.)
  • Adults with bad posture (people who slump, Work on the computer all day, and much more in the queue)

When You Need A Lumbar Discectomy Surgery 101

A lumbar discectomy surgery 101 is considered a “decompression” spinal surgery. A discectomy is sometimes called “herniated disc surgery.” If you are one of them who have a lumbar herniated disc (a fractured disc in your lower spine) and your doctor has advised for surgery, possibilities are you will be developing a lumbar discectomy. A lumbar discectomy includes taking out the ruptured part of your disc that is stroking against vertebrae/nerves in your lower spine. By eliminating this extreme pressure, you can spot the pain, numbness,  tingling, feelings of sciatica, so on that are causing you trouble.

A lumbar discectomy is performed to:

  • Spot buttocks or leg pain triggered by nerve compression from a or herniated disc
  • Provide treatment to leg numbness and weakness.
  • Reduce and relieve pressure on the spinal cord or nerves.

Dr. Michael Shaub, an expert chiropractor in Jackson heights, quoted that “lumbar discectomy surgeries are among the most reliable and successful surgeries” to treat back pain. If you have a structural problem, like a lumbar herniated disc, your doctor can spot and better address the exact reason for pain and other symptoms.

What Does Discectomy Surgery Seem Like?

When it comes to discectomy surgery, the ruptured portion (nucleus pulposus) that is rubbing against your vertebrae and spine is removed. This means that your orthopedic spine specialist will require ingress to your lower spinal part in the middle of the procedure. This method is pretty simple and is generally done in an outpatient (immediate surgery) setting.

In the middle of an ongoing outpatient lumbar discectomy surgery, you may get a microdiscectomy (the minimally invasive version of the method) where the nucleus pulposus is eliminated with laser technology via a small 1-inch incision (a slit). With the help of fluoroscopic x-raying technique, the discectomy surgery is performed with such a small and fine incision and minimal muscle or tissue damage. This helps in a shorter, less painful, and easy recovery.

A percutaneous lumbar discectomy (also termed an endoscopic discectomy) eliminates a portion of the ruptured disc using suction or laser using a small cut and one or more tubes or probes. The medical slit for each tube is around one centimeter long. As it is less invasive, the pain reduces, and recovery should be pretty tolerable.

Why ICD 10 Code Is Used

The ICD 10 CM code (M51.16) can also be used to clarify conditions or terms like the addressing of herniation of intervertebral lumbar disc with sciatica, numbness or tingling of the lumbar spine, nucleus pulposus herniation, herniation of core pulposus of the lumbar intervertebral disc, lumbago with sciatica, lumbar disc prolapse with radiculopathy, and so on. The ICD 10 code is often used in orthopedics medical specialties to particularize clinical concepts such as thoracic, lumbosacral intervertebral disc disorders, and thoracolumbar.

Code History

  • 2016 (successful 10/1/2015): New code (first year of non-draft ICD 10 CM)
  • 2017 (effective 10/1/2016): No change
  • 2018 (Successful 10/1/2017): No change
  • 2019 (effective 10/1/2018): No change
  • 2020 (influential 10/1/2019): No change
  • 2021 (functional 10/1/2020): No change

MS-DRG Mapping

  • DRG Group #551-552 – Medical back pain problems without MCC.
  • DRG Group #551-552 – Medical back pain problems with MCC.

The GEM or General Equivalency Mapping crosswalk represents an estimated mapping between the ICD 10 CM M51.16 and ICD-9 code; it’s equivalent. The estimated mapping means there is no ideal match between the ICD-9 code and the ICD-10 code, and the mapped code is not an accurate depiction of the original code.

What Is Intervertebral Disc Displacement?

Lumbar disc herniation is a bone rupture of the annulus fibrosis (fibrocartilagenous material) that encompasses the intervertebral disc. This fracture involves removing the disc’s central part containing a gelatinous material termed the nucleus pulposus. Pressure due to the vertebrae above and below may be the reason for the nucleus pulposus to be forced outward, exerting pressure on a spinal nerve or cord and causing significant damage and pain to the spinal nerve. This situation most often occurs in the lumbar site and is also typically known as herniated nucleus pulposus, fractured intervertebral disc, prolapsed disk, or slipped disc.

The spinal portion consists of 26 vertebrae joined together and allow side bending, backward and forward bending, and rotation of the spine. Five different areas include the spinal column, such as the thoracic (chest) region, sacral, cervical (neck) region, lumbar (low back) region, and coccygeal (tailbone) site. The thoracic portion comprises 12 vertebrae, the cervical part includes seven vertebrae, and the lumbar site contains five vertebrae. Intervertebral discs sit between each adjoining vertebra. The sacrum consists of five merged vertebrae, which are connected to four merged vertebrae making the coccyx.

Can A Chiropractor Treat Lumbar Herniated Disc

In the case of a lumbar herniated disc, a spine chiropractor can help decrease the pain triggered by a herniated disc. Chiropractic treatment techniques for the lumbar herniated disc include spinal manipulation, physical therapy, and muscle-building exercises. Significantly, protruding disc chiropractors may not be able to accelerate the treatment process of a herniated disc, but they can teach you how to prevent exacerbating the condition.

Suppose you feel that you are developing a herniated disc in your lumbar spinal discs. In that case, you’ll likely require finding yourself a good herniated disc chiropractor who is potential enough to provide your body with the treatment needed to make you feel comfortable again. Dr. Michael Shaub is one of the highly experienced and licensed chiropractors in Jackson heights. He is a back and spine specialist, associated with RealignSpine, who provides its patients with highly effective and immediate treatments. If you are looking for a licensed expert chiropractor in Jackson heights, consider visiting RealignSpine and booking an appointment with Dr. Shaub.

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