The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services has recently assigned a Category I Current Procedural Terminology (CPT) reimbursement code for a minimally invasive procedure designed to address the symptoms of patients with chronic rhinitis.
Effective Jan 1, 2024, the assigned payment for CPT code 31242 is for endoscopic destruction of the posterior nasal nerve using radiofrequency ablation. The code describes the procedure performed by otolaryngologists or ear, nose, and throat (ENT) physicians when disrupting overactive nerves that drive chronic rhinitis symptoms.
The establishment of this CPT code is a milestone for physicians who treat chronic rhinitis patients, according to Marc G. Dubin, MD, FACS, a subspecialist in sinus and nasal disease. “The establishment of this CPT code is a significant milestone for physicians who treat chronic rhinitis patients with ablation of the posterior nasal nerves as we are now able to provide patients lasting relief and address chronic runny nose, post-nasal drip, and congestion more effectively,” says Dubin in a release.
The new code will be instated for use with systems like Neurent Medical’s Neuromark. The Neuromark System, which received US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approval in October 2021, offers ENTs a leaflet design to help achieve precise placement across the posterior nasal nerve and accessory pathways. Smart algorithms monitor the treatment of targeted tissue to ensure it is delivered adequately to the intended area. Microlesions disrupt the posterior nasal nerve pathway while maintaining mucosal and vascular integrity.
“The assignment of the CPT code marks the next chapter of evolution and growth for Neurent Medical. We are extremely proud to be at the forefront of innovation, introducing a sustainable treatment option for patients who are suffering with chronic rhinitis,” says Neurent Medical’s CEO Brian Shields in a release. “The Neuromark System uses a proprietary algorithm and biofeedback to tailor treatment for each individual patient.”
The new code also describes the procedure performed by ENT physicians when treating overactive nerves that drive chronic rhinitis symptoms with Aerin Medical’s RhinAer. RhinAer disrupts the posterior nasal nerve and treats anatomic contributors to congestion including the inferior turbinate and septal swell bodies. RhinAer is supported by clinical evidence demonstrating significant, durable symptom improvement for chronic rhinitis patients. Treatment with RhinAer is non-invasive and can be performed by ENT physicians in the office and outpatient surgical settings.
“Many chronic rhinitis patients aren’t optimally managed medically, and they can be stuck in a cycle of ineffective care,” says Elina Toskala, MD, PhD, MBA, professor at Thomas Jefferson University in the department of otolaryngology – head and neck surgery, in a release. “Obtaining this CPT code is a significant milestone for our community of physicians who utilize radiofrequency ablation to provide patients lasting relief and address symptoms associated with chronic runny nose, post-nasal drip, and congestion.”
RhinAer received FDA 510(k) clearance in December 2019 and CE Mark in 2020.
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