3D Rendering with CT – 2 Codes, So Many Questions

76376 and 76377 – the CPT codes describing 3D rendering of 2D images to give the images an illusion of depth. These codes may be applied in addition to site-specific imaging codes assuming the criteria are met for utilization…which sounds fairly straightforward. However, proper use of these codes is among the top questions received by the authors of the CT/MR Coder.

In what instance is it appropriate to assign codes 76376 or 76377 in conjunction with a CT code?

Codes 76376 and 76377 are assigned when 3D reformatted images are constructed from a CT data set. Some key terms to look for are maximum intensity projections (MIPs), shaded surface rendering, and volumetric rendering. It is important to note that many times the radiologist will dictate that coronal, sagittal, multiplanar or oblique reformats were constructed from axial images, but these are 2D, not 3D. What needs to be in the report in order to code for 3D rendering?

  • A description of the studies and/or procedures performed
  • The rendering and interpretation of the images should be clearly documented
  • Whether the 3D rendering was performed on an independent workstation or on the acquisition scanner – this determines which code should be used
  • A test order and medical necessity supporting the use of 3D rendering
  • Physician supervision or participation in 3D rendering

For additional information and answers to frequently asked questions, check out the CT/MR Coder.