Cough Unspecified ICD-10-CM Codes

Read this short guide to learn about Cough Unspecified ICD codes you can use.

By Audrey Liz Perez on Jun 16, 2024.

Fact Checked by Ericka Pingol.

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Cough Unspecified ICD-10-CM Codes

What Cough Unspecified ICD codes can I use?

If you’re looking for Cough Unspecified ICD codes, there are three that you can use! The main one you want to use is R05.9 - Cough, unspecified, which is meant to be used on a patient confirmed to be coughing, but it’s not specified or known as to what kind of cough they currently have. As soon as you identify the specific type of cough they have, it’s best to use a more specific ICD-10 code.

There is a type of cough with its own set of ICD-10 codes called Whooping Cough. It even has unspecified codes. Here they are:

  1. A37.90 - Whooping cough, unspecified species without pneumonia
  2. A37.91 - Whooping cough, unspecified species with pneumonia

Whooping Cough is an infectious respiratory problem caused by certain species of bacteria like Bordetella pertussis and Bordetella parapertussis. These codes are meant to be used if the specific species isn’t specified or known. Use the appropriate ICD-10 code depending on whether the patient has pneumonia. If the specific species has been identified, please use a more specific ICD-10 code.

Are these Cough Unspecified ICD codes billable?

Yes. All of the aforementioned Cough Unspecified-related ICD-10 codes are valid and billable.

Clinical information about coughs:

Coughing is what our body makes us do when fighting off anything irritating our lungs and throat. It’s a way to clear our airways, especially when dealing with respiratory diseases.

While it’s a natural reflex of our bodies, it doesn’t necessarily mean it’s good because coughing excessively can affect us negatively. Coughing can sap our energies, sometimes too much that it can knock us out. Sometimes, coughing can strain a throat so much that it becomes wounded, and a person can cough up blood. Coughing can even affect our sleep and keep us awake, and lack of sleep makes us feel tired and groggy.

To manage coughs, antibiotics, cough syrups, and cough medicine can help us. Even something as simple as drinking water and showering can help relieve a cough, albeit temporarily. Drinking hot tea mixed with honey helps, too!

Synonyms include:

  • Allergic cough
  • Barking cough
  • Bovine cough
  • Brassy cough
  • Croupy cough
  • Dry cough
  • Early morning cough
  • Effective cough
  • Evening cough
  • Hacking cough
  • Painful cough
  • Postural cough
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Commonly asked questions

You mentioned that coughing is a reflex that tries to fight off irritants. What are examples of irritants?

Irritants can include strong smells from perfumes and cleaners, smoke from car exhausts and cigarettes, dust from shelves, and pollen, to mention a few.

What medical problems can cause us to cough?

Respiratory system-related problems like the common cold, flu, asthma, bronchitis, pertussis (whooping coughs), sinusitis, pneumonia, and allergic reactions can cause us to cough.

What are other types of coughs besides Whooping Coughs?

Examples of various cough types include dry and wet coughs, differentiated by the absence or presence of mucus. Acute coughs emerge suddenly and persist for two to three weeks, while subacute coughs, often stemming from infections, last between three to eight weeks. Chronic coughs exceed an eight-week duration, with refractory coughs being a non-responsive subtype; additionally, some individuals exhibit barking or wheezing coughs, characterized by their distinct sounds.

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