Drs. Jayasri Iyer & Paul Nghiem lead effort to create MCC-specific ICD-9 codes

March 1, 2009

Drs. Jayasri Iyer & Paul Nghiem have led an effort to petitioned to the CDC and appropriate World Health Organization entities to create ICD-9 codes that are specific for Merkel cell carcinoma (MCC), rather than having MCC bundled under the 173 code for malignant neoplasm of skin (most commonly used for basal cell carcinomas).

This petition was reviewed in committees and then at a formal meeting in January 2009 in Maryland where it was accepted. We were particularly pleased that they granted seven codes specific to MCC as summarized below, and similar in general organization to those for melanoma. Beginning in October 2009, MCC should be reported using these new codes. This will greatly improve our ability to obtain insurance approval for procedures for MCC patients, as well as track costs, incidence, etc for this cancer.

Current MCC ICD codes can be found here.