The ICD10 Classification

In the International Classification of Diseases, 10th edition, there are various codes related to decompression illness. These are broad categories and do not serve the purpose of differentiating the clinical and etiological subtleties of the conditions: There is no sub-classification for caisson's disease, although certain forms of barotrauma are sub-classified. The ICD-10 codes most frequently used are:

• T70 (Effects of air pressure and water pressure)

• T70.4 (Effects of high-pressure fluids)

• T70.8 (Other effects of air pressure and water pressure)

• T79.0 (Traumatic air embolism)

• T79.7 (Traumatic subcutaneous emphysema)

• M90.3 (Osteonecrosis in caisson disease - T70.3+)

While the ICD-10 has become the international standard for diagnostic classification of general epidemiological data, its primary application is for billing and national healthcare decision-making processes rather than unraveling the intricacies of a given medical condition. In short the ICD-10 has function and value but contributes little to the sub specialty of diving medicine.

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