Question: Do you have to document velocity measurements of blood flow in order to assign one of the duplex codes (93880-93990)?
Answer: Duplex Doppler studies should only be reported when medically necessary, ordered, and appropriately documented. All Doppler studies should describe that both spectral and color Doppler were performed. While velocities are relevant in some duplex Doppler examinations depending on the clinical scenario and are routinely reported for carotid ultrasounds, documentation of velocity is not a required component to report in all duplex studies. In general, information in the report on specific flow parameters (eg. waveforms, velocities, resistive indices) may be included, according to the relevance determined by the interpreting radiologist.
The ACR 2020 Ultrasound Coding User’s Guide lists the following terms that indicate a Doppler study was performed:
|Analog velocity||Resistive index|
|Bandwidth broadening||Spectral analysis|
|Duplex Doppler||Spectral broadening|
|Peak systolic velocity||Tardus parvus waveforms|