The Importance of Medical Terminology and ICD-9-CM Coding

Medical terminology and ICD-9-CM coding go hand in hand. Without the knowledge of both someone can find themselves lost in the sea of complex numbers, words, and phrases that make up a big percentage of the medical field. Medical terminology and ICD-9-CM coding are especially important when it comes to not so common conditions such as Marfan’s syndrome.

Marfan’s syndrome is not well known outside of the medical community it is not likely that an average day-to-day person will have knowledge on this condition.

One in five thousand people are affected with Marfan’s syndrome. (Right Diagnosis) Marfan’s syndrome is a rare incurable disease that affects the connective tissue in one’s body. Connective tissue is vital to a well-functioning body because the fibers are what holds the organs together and keep them structured and supported.

The symptoms of Marfan’s syndrome can range from mild to life threatening. One of the most common traits of this disorder is growing abnormally tall.

Now where this would be an NBA players dream; people with Marfan’s are often limited when it comes it sports because this disease in some cases makes the aortic root in the heart to enlarge which puts the heart under stress when pumping blood in strenuous activities. This could cause the patient heart to burst.

Other indicators and features of Marfan’s disease include: tall and slender build, flat feet, extreme nearsightedness (from the detachment of the retina), disproportionately long arms, fingers, legs and toes, heart murmurs, double jointed, abnormally curved spine, and or a breastbone that dips inward or outward.

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Marfan’s syndrome is more often than not passed down genetically. “Marfan’s syndrome results from mutations in the fibrillin-1 (FBN1) gene on chromosome 15, which encodes for the glycoprotein fibrillin.” (E-medicine)

Seventy-five percent inherit this condition from a parent who actively has it while twenty-five percent obtain it through a new genetic mutation. Now while Marfan’s is not always inherited, it is in fact always heritable. (E-Medicine) Every condition has its place on the ICD-9-CM system. The medical code for Marfan’s syndrome is 759.82.

ICD-9-CM is short for International Classification of Diseases Ninth Edition Clinical Modification. This system was created to be a universal and common language amongst health care physicians, nurses, and other specialists within the medical field. These six digit codes can be used to identify diseases, injuries, and treatments.

This system is profound in relation to Marfan’s syndrome because when the code 759.82 is written on a file or spoken of all of the clinical information for this condition will be universally known and, therefore, can be identified from doctors internationally. Codes reduce the risk of error because where words can be mispronounced or used out of context; numbers have a smaller chance of that happening. Also, it eliminates the possibility of someone putting their own opinion in the mix because the facts are universally known and unless there is a universal correcting there will not be any confusion.

The ICD-9-CM system and medical terminology are important because it gives doctors a universal understanding of the diagnosis and conditions that a patient may have or even a procedure they may need. ICD-9-CM and medical terminology puts everyone on one accord and helps them have the same understanding of a prognosis and diagnosis interchangeably.

Medical terminology and coding systems such as the ICD-9-CM are extremely helpful when it comes to helping everyone having the same knowledge on medical terms. Marfan’s syndrome is not a well-known condition outside of the medical field; however, with the knowledge of the ICD-9-CM system, a doctor can have a universal understanding of this condition and thus know how to prepare a patient with informative steps on how to live with this disorder. Medical terminology and the ICD-9-CM coding system are essential in the medical field because it reduces the risk of confusion, misdiagnosis, and overall error.

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The Importance of Medical Terminology and ICD-9-CM Coding. (2023, May 17). Retrieved from

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