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Top 38 funny ICD-10 codes

Funny ICD-10 codes

Nurse practitioners and nurses see some crazy things that would make most people vomit, faint, or run away. But these experiences do not phase nurse practitioners (we’ve seen it all). In order to be a healthcare provider, you have to have some kind of sense of humor.

It helps to keep happiness during the stress of the day. Humor brings joy when all nurse practitioners see is hard ship. Afterall, laughter is the best medicine!

The Nurse Practitioner Charting School has compiled a list of 38 funny ICD-10 codes that are actual codes!

Enjoy!

What is an ICD-10 code

ICD-10 codes are part of the International Classification of Diseases, Tenth Revision (ICD-10), which is a standardized system used for classifying and coding diseases, symptoms, abnormal findings, and other health-related conditions. These codes are used by healthcare professionals, including nurse practitioners, medical coders, and researchers, to accurately document and communicate diagnoses and procedures.

ICD-10 codes are alphanumeric codes that provide specific details about a patient’s condition. They are structured in a hierarchical manner, with different levels of specificity. The codes consist of three to seven characters, where each character represents a specific category or aspect of the condition being described.

Here’s a breakdown of the general structure of an ICD-10 code:

  1. Character 1: Represents the chapter of the ICD-10 classification. There are 21 chapters, each representing a different category of diseases or conditions.
  2. Characters 2 and 3: Indicate the category within a chapter. These characters narrow down the classification to a specific disease or condition group.
  3. Characters 4 to 6: Provide further details about the etiology, anatomical site, severity, or other relevant factors related to the condition.
  4. Character 7: Is an extension character used for laterality, if applicable, to specify which side of the body is affected.

For example, the code I10 represents “Essential (primary) hypertension,” where:

  • “I” represents the chapter “Diseases of the circulatory system.”
  • “10” represents the category “Hypertensive diseases.”

How ICD-10 codes are developed

ICD-10 codes are created and maintained by the World Health Organization (WHO). The process of developing and updating the codes involves input from healthcare experts, medical societies, and government agencies from around the world. 

These experts contribute to the development of new codes, revisions of existing codes, and ensuring the system remains up to date with advancements in medical knowledge and technology.

The creation of new codes or modifications to existing codes is typically driven by the need to capture and accurately describe emerging diseases, conditions, treatments, and diagnostic methods. This process involves research, clinical studies, consultation with experts, and evaluation of existing evidence. 

The proposed changes are reviewed, discussed, and approved through a collaborative process involving various committees and organizations before they are officially included in the ICD-10 classification. 

Because the ICD-10 codes are created by the WHO, the codes are relevant throughout the whole world. So even though The United States has very few exotic birds, there is still an ICD 10 code for being injured by an exotic bird (W61.12 Struck by a Macaw).

What makes funny ICD-10 codes

These codes were developed from some concern or real life incident that sparked the need to create a specific code. So codes such as: Y92.146 Swimming-pool of prison as place of occurrence of the external cause, X52 Prolonged stay in weightless environment, or W37.0X Explosion of bicycle tire most likely actually happened.

There are ICD-10 codes that are very specific such as: W51.XX Accidental striking against or bumped into another person, V94.810 Civilian watercraft involved in water transport accident with military watercraft, or V80.1 Animal rider or occupant of animal-drawn vehicle injured in collision with pedestrian or animal.

And other codes that are not as specific but still funny ICD-10 codes. For example, S10.87 Other superficial bite of other specified part of the neck (sounds like a hickey…. or a vampire bite).

But there are also ICD-10 codes that have you wanting to hear the background story: V91.07 Burn due to water skis on fire (sounds like a redneck’s adventure), V95.42 Forced landing of spacecraft, injuring occupant, or V00.01 Pedestrian on foot injured in collision with roller-skater.

There may also be some ICD-10 codes that are used in certain geographical areas more than others. For example, I work in a rural hospital. We experience numerous livestock related injuries a year.

For example, ICD-10 code: W55.22 Struck by cow is not uncommon for us. Injuries by a cow may be severe enough to be a medical emergency (severe head, chest, abdominal trauma). But I have never used (and probably never will) the code: W56.12 Struck by sea lion.

Needless to say, there are some funny ICD-10 codes that are actually valid to use. The Nurse Practitioner Charting School has compiled a list for your viewing pleasure!

Funny ICD-10 codes

In no particular order, here are the top 38 funny ICD-10 codes:

V91.07 Burn due to water skis on fire

V95.42 Forced landing of spacecraft, injuring occupant

V96.0 Balloon accident injury occupant

W55.41 Bitten by pig

W59.22 Struck by turtle

X52 Prolonged stay in weightless environment

W22.02 Walked into a lamppost

Y93.D1 Activity, knitting/crocheting

Y92.250 Art Gallery as the place of occurrence of the external cause 

W37.0X Explosion of bicycle tire

S10.87 Other superficial bite of other specified part of the neck

W55.22 Struck by cow

T75.01 Shock due to being struck by lightning

W56.52 Struck by other fish

W17.3 Fall into empty swimming pool 

V00.211 Fall from ice skates

Z62.891 Sibling rivalry

V94.810 Civilian watercraft involved in water transport accident with military watercraft

W61.42 Struck by turkey

W61.43 Pecked by a turkey

V80.1 Animal rider or occupant of animal-drawn vehicle injured in collision with pedestrian or animal

Z99.89 Dependence on enabling machine and devices

W56.01 Bitten by dolphin

Y92.146 Swimming-pool of prison as place of occurrence of the external cause

W61.3 Contact with chicken

W61.01 Bitten by parrot 

V00.01 Pedestrian on foot injured in collision with roller-skater

W55.5 Contact with a racoon 

Y93.J1 Activity, playing piano

R46.1 Bizarre personal appearance 

W61.62 Struck by a duck

Z63.1 Problems in relationship with in-laws

Y93.I1 Activity, roller coaster riding

W51.XX Accidental striking against or bumped into another person

V97.21 Parachutists entangled in object

W56.12 Struck by sea lion

Z59.2 Discord with neighbors, lodgers, landlord

W61.12 Struck by a Macaw

Have you every used any of these codes from this list of funny ICD-10 codes?

More about billing and coding as nurse practitioners

While looking at the list of funny ICD-10 codes brings humor to our busy day as nurse practitioner, there is actually a lot more to billing and coding in healthcare!

The Nurse Practitioner Charting School has put together The Basics of Billing and Coding Course to educate and empower nurse practitioners!

Billing and coding for nurse practitioners

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Lesson topics include:

  • Coding and Billing Terminology: Discover the lingo and process of coding and billing patient encounters.
  • Introduction to Coding: Learn the things you didn’t learn in nurse practitioner school!
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  • Coding by Time and Prolonged Services: This lesson covers the coding by time and the 2021 changes to the Evaluation and Management Codes as well as the 2023 changes to the Evaluation and Management Codes.
  • Practice Coding Examples: We will discuss real world examples and learn to code using evaluation and management levels 99202-99205 and 99211-99215.

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The Basics of Billing and Coding Course  will help nurse practitioners feel confident choosing the correct Evaluation and Management CPT® code for a patient visit, so you can avoid over coding (and under coding!) ensuring you receive proper insurance reimbursement!

Erica D the NP is a family nurse practitioner and The Nurse Practitioner Charting Coach. Erica helps nurse practitioners STOP charting at home! Erica created The Nurse Practitioner Charting School to be the one stop for all documentation resources created specifically for nurse practitioners. Learn more at www.npchartingschool.com

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