Speech therapy ICD-10 code knowledge is a simple, yet important step for clinicians working in almost all settings. Starting a private practice for Speech Therapy? Already have an established practice, but thinking of expanding the range of conditions you’ll treat? Or maybe you primarily work in another setting and are thinking of seeing a few private clients on your own. Speech-Language Pathologists are lucky to have a high level of flexibility within their career and you’ll need to know the speech therapy ICD-10 codes for all of them.
Clinicians use speech therapy ICD-10 codes daily in documentation. Referrals, daily treatment notes, initial assessments, and re-evaluation reports all include ICD-10 codes. Whether you’re an SLP working with children, adults, or both age groups, it’s important to know the correct ICD-10 codes for Speech and Language Disorders.
Some ICD-10 codes for Speech-Language Pathologists are more commonly used than others. A good starting point for SLPs who are beginning to work privately with clients is to be familiar with these codes.
Before getting into the details about the most common speech therapy ICD-10 codes, some SLPs might need a refresher on what ICD-10 is. Why is it imperative for SLPs to be familiar with speech therapy ICD-10 codes, know how to use them, and keep up with changes to codes?
Let’s explore the answers to all of those questions and talk about some of the most common speech therapy ICD-10 codes.
What is ICD-10?
The World Health Organization (WHO) owns the ICD-10, which stands for International Classification of Diseases, 10th Revision. This is the official system used to assign health care codes for various procedures and diagnoses in the U.S.
The “CM” you see in “ICD-10 CM” stands for Clinical Modification. This was developed by the CDC (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention) and is intended to be used across healthcare settings in the U.S. It represents the most up to date edition of the ICD-10-CM codes for 2022.
If all of this terminology and coding seems intimidating, you’re not alone. It can sound like a lot to wrap your head around, but we’ll make it simple with this reference guide to the most common Speech Therapy ICD-10 codes.
Stay up to date with the most recent ICD-10 codes (there’s an update every year.).
This way, you can comply with HIPAA regulations and ensure payments through Medicaid, Medicare, and private insurance companies.
Top 10 Speech Therapy ICD-10 Codes
The American Speech Language Hearing Association (ASHA) states providers should choose the speech therapy ICD-10 code(s) that “provide the greatest degree of accuracy and completeness”. Look at the specific characteristics of a given diagnosis and to be sure that these characteristics accurately describe your client’s difficulties.
This list will guide you when evaluating a client and reporting speech therapy ICD-10 codes for their diagnoses, evaluations and treatment notes.
#1: F80.1 Expressive Language Disorder
According to ASHA, Expressive Language Disorder is an impairment in the “use of a spoken, written, and/or other communication symbol system (e.g., ASL)”. An Expressive Language Disorder may involve impairments with language form, content, or use of Augmentative and Alternative Communication (AAC) for certain clients. This might include a child who has difficulty putting words together with correct grammar or an adult with difficulty using language due to a stroke.
Expressive language disorders are common, with statistics reporting that more than 3% of children in the U.S. have had a language disorder in the past year. In adults, approximately 1 million individuals in the U.S. have Aphasia (certain types fall under F80.1).
#2: F80.2 Mixed Receptive-Expressive Language Disorder
The F80.2 Mixed Receptive Expressive Language Disorder includes the following criteria symptoms:
- Presence of both a Receptive Language Disorder and an Expressive Language Disorder. This is a common diagnosis seen by SLPs, as 1 in 12 children in the U.S. are estimated to have a disorder related to speech, language, voice, or swallowing.
- It may include Developmental Dysphasia or Aphasia (receptive), or Developmental Wernicke’s Aphasia, when working with adult clients.
Be sure to look at the exclusions for F80.2, which include Central Auditory Processing Disorder, Dysphasia or Aphasia NOS, Acquired Aphasia with Epilepsy, and other disorders.
More information on coding a Mixed Receptive-Expressive Language Disorder can be found on the TheraPlatform blog.
#3: R48.2 Apraxia
Apraxia of Speech is a motor planning disorder, and you may see the following characteristics in children with this disorder:
- Atypical and/or inconsistent sound errors
- Disordered speech intonation
- Groping movements of oral muscles when trying to imitate or produce certain sounds
- Distorted vowel productions
- Errors in voicing
The speech therapy ICD-10 code R48.2 should be used for the diagnosis of Apraxia. Be sure to reference the TheraPlatform blog article on this code for important details regarding inclusions and exclusions.
#4: R13.1 Dysphagia
This speech therapy ICD-10 code is commonly used by clinicians, as 1 in 25 adults are estimated to experience a swallowing problem each year.
- R13.1 Dysphagia can be found under the area of “Symptoms and signs involving the digestive system and abdomen” and include:
- R13.10 Dysphagia: Unspecified; Difficulty in swallowing NOS
- R13.11 Dysphagia; Oral phase
- R13.12 Oropharyngeal phase
And other specific codes which describe a client’s specific phase or level of difficulty with Swallowing. This code does have exclusions, including Dysphagia following cerebrovascular disease. Refer to our complete guide on the R13.1 ICD-10 code for details.
#5: R63.31 Acute Pediatric Feeding Disorder and R63.32 Chronic Pediatric Feeding Disorder
These 2 speech therapy ICD-10 codes are relatively new, and took effect in 2022. Speech Therapists working with children who have a Pediatric Feeding Disorder may modify food or liquid textures, recommend certain types of bottles, or provide families with mealtime strategies.
An estimated 1 in 35 children under the age of 5 has a Pediatric Feeding Disorder, according to the American Academy of Pediatrics.
Keep in mind:
- R63.31 Acute Pediatric Feeding DIsorder: refers to a disorder that has been present for less than 3 months
- R63.32 Chronic Pediatric Feeding DIsorder: refers to a disorder that has been present for more than 3 months
TheraPlatform’s blog article on the ICD-10 R63.31 and R63.32 codes includes more important details, like the inclusions and exclusions for using these codes.
#6: R47.1 Dysarthria
Pathologists working with pediatric or adult clients should be familiar with the speech therapy ICD-10 code R47.1 for Dysarthria. Characteristics include weakness of the speech musculature, which results in slurred or slow speech that can be marked by decreased intelligibility.
Clients with neurological conditions such as Parkinson’s disease or genetic disorders like Down Syndrome may present with Dysarthria. 1 in 1,000 children from ages 4 to 8 are estimated to have Dysarthria. Visit the TheraPlatform blog for in-depth information and guidance on the R47.1 ICD-10 code.
#7: R48.8 Other Symbolic Dysfunction
The prevalence of Autism Spectrum Disorder is 1 in 44 children, according to the CDC. Because it is so frequently occuring, SLPs should be familiar with the speech diagnosis appropriate to use with children who have ASD.
R48.4 Other Symbolic Dysfunction refers to organic-based language deficits, including pragmatic disorders, according to ASHA. ASHA also states that this diagnosis should be listed as the primary diagnosis. The Autism Diagnosis (F84.0) or the Asperger’s Syndrome diagnosis (F84.5) should be listed as the secondary diagnosis.
SLPs should note that this code should be differentiated and not used in conjunction with the code F80.2 Mixed Receptive-Expressive Language Disorder.
#8: F80.4 Speech and Language Developmental Delay Due to Hearing Loss
This code is listed by the WHO under Mental, Behavioral, and Neurodevelopmental Disorders.
Criteria symptoms of F80.4 include:
- An articulation deficit secondary to conductive hearing loss
- Speech and language developmental delay or disorder with the presence of hearing loss
In 2019, 1.7 per 1,000 babies were found to have hearing loss during newborn screenings. If you are a clinician working with a child who has a history of conductive or sensorineural hearing loss, it’s important to make sure you are familiar with this speech therapy ICD-10 code.
#9: F80.81 Childhood Onset Fluency Disorders
This code should be used with children who demonstrate a fluency disorder, including stuttering and cluttering. Exclusions for the R80.81 code include adult onset fluency disorder. For this, the F98.5 code should be used.
An estimated 5% to 8% of children stutter, making fluency disorders somewhat common in the United States. Speech Therapists are likely to encounter a child on their caseload who demonstrates stuttering or cluttering.
#10: F80.0 Articulation Disorder and Phonological Disorder
Two of the most common speech disorders that SLPs encounter are the Articulation Disorder or Phonological Disorder. The estimated prevalence of these disorders is 52.7% of children ages 4 to 6 years-old.
F80.0 is the speech therapy ICD-10 CM code that should be used for the following diagnoses:
- Speech sound disorder
- Phonological Disorder
- Speech Articulation Disorder
Exclusions to pay attention to include speech articulation disorders due to hearing loss or intellectual disability. Specific ICD-10 codes should be used when referring to an articulation disorder with expressive language disorder (F80.1) or mixed receptive-expressive language disorder (F80.2).
When Do ICD-10 Codes Change?
Updates to ICD-10 codes are released each year and go into effect October 1st. SLP’s should stay in the know about the changes so they can comply with HIPAA and insurance requirements. Therapists can find accurate information on the latest speech therapy ICD-10 code updates on the CMS website or by using the CDC’sICD-10-CM Lookup tool.
Another way to stay up to date with the most common, accurate speech therapy ICD-10 codes? TheraPlatform makes it easy to use ICD-10 codes accurately with its speech therapy ICD-10 code lookup. You can also use TheraPlatform to manage several aspects of your practice, from documentation to financial organization and scheduling. Not to mention, some amazing resources for Speech Language Pathologists. Consider starting with a free trial of TheraPlatform today.
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