Posted on 26. Sep, 2009 by in Hot Coding Topics
If you think your hip is that thing jutting out at you in the mirror, your nomenclature needs a rehaul to ensure you’re nailing the correct codes. Coding for hip fractures and other procedures is easier when the coder is hip to the anatomy and terminology.
Common mistake: The average person refers to the prominent part of the pelvis that juts out just below the waistline (the iliac crest) as the hip. However, the hip portion of the pelvis is really about five inches below and is called the acetabulum, or “true hip.”
The ABCs of Hip Anatomy
Hip joint: Three areas of the pelvic structure form the acetabulum or the socket: the ilium, the ischium, and the pubis.
Femoral head: This is the “ball,” which is located in the upper end of the femur. The femoral head and the acetabulum are covered with a layer of cartilage that provides shock absorption and load distribution within the hip.
Femoral neck: The area below the femoral head where the bone narrows into a tubelike structure about two inches long.
Greater and lesser trochanters: These are part of the femur located just distal to the femoral neck where the bone widens into two large prominences. “Intertrochanteric” refers to any region between the two trachanters and “subtrochanteric” refers to the widened part of the shaft just below the lesser trochanteric.
Bigelow ligament (anterior iliofemoral ligament): This ligament covers the femoral neck and the ligament teres, which is the round ligament between the middle of the femoral head and the center of the acetabulum.
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