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Laboratory Medicine Updates - August 26, 2002


University of Virginia Health System

Medical Laboratories

“Quality You Expect, Service You Deserve”

Laboratory Medicine Update

August 26, 2002


Buffy Coat Smears


Requests for Buffy Coat Smear must have pathology approval prior to being performed.  A Buffy Coat Smear is performed when the WBC count is low in an effort to detect clinically significant finding that could be missed with this concentration.  Please contact the Hematopathology Resident (pic 1386) with questions or for approval.



2002 Laboratory Handbooks Available


2002 Laboratory Handbooks are complete and are being distributed.  Please dispose of your 2001 copy, preferably by recycling it.  If you have questions regarding the new handbook or need additional copies, please call the Medical Laboratories Administration office at 4-2291 (434-924-2291).



Helicobacter pylori Testing now in the Davis Laboratory


Helicobacter pylori IgG antibody testing by chemiluminescent immunoassay is now being performed in the Davis Laboratory.  The assay, performed three days a week, has a reference interval of <0.9 U/mL.



New HCPCS and CPT Codes for Fecal Occult Blood Tests


For Corporate Compliance reasons, we are required to differentiate between the following HCPCS and CPT codes for the fecal occult blood test.  All laboratory test request forms, including Point of Care request/result forms, are being updated to reflect this new requirement.


G0107 – Colorectal cancer screening: Fecal occult blood test, 1-3 simultaneous determinations.  This code should be used for the purpose of screening for colorectal cancer in the absence of signs, symptoms, or complaints associate with gastrointestinal blood loss.  Medicare covers one annual screen for patients over the age of 50.

82270 – Blood, Occult; Feces screening: This code is used once for up to 3 separate specimens.  This code should be used in the presence of signs and symptoms – “medical necessity” for Medicare patients.  For example, to evaluate known or suspected alimentary tract conditions that might cause bleeding into the intestinal tract, to evaluate unexpected anemia, to evaluate abnormal signs, symptoms, or complaints that might be associated with loss of blood, or to evaluate patient complaints of black or red-tinged stools.