ICD-10 Diagnosis Code Z20.810

Contact with and (suspected) exposure to anthrax

Diagnosis Code Z20.810

ICD-10: Z20.810
Short Description: Contact with and (suspected) exposure to anthrax
Long Description: Contact with and (suspected) exposure to anthrax
This is the 2017 version of the ICD-10-CM diagnosis code Z20.810

Code Classification
  • Factors influencing health status and contact with health services
    • Persons with potential health hazards related to communicable diseases (Z20-Z29)
      • Contact w and (suspected) exposure to communicable diseases (Z20)

Information for Patients


Anthrax is a disease caused by Bacillus anthracis, a germ that lives in soil. Many people know about it from the 2001 bioterror attacks. In the attacks, someone purposely spread anthrax through the U.S. mail. This killed five people and made 22 sick.

Anthrax is rare. It affects animals such as cattle, sheep, and goats more often than people. People can get anthrax from contact with infected animals, wool, meat, or hides. It can cause three forms of disease in people. They are

  • Cutaneous, which affects the skin. People with cuts or open sores can get it if they touch the bacteria.
  • Inhalation, which affects the lungs. You can get this if you breathe in spores of the bacteria.
  • Gastrointestinal, which affects the digestive system. You can get it by eating infected meat.

Antibiotics often cure anthrax if it is diagnosed early. But many people don't know they have anthrax until it is too late to treat. A vaccine to prevent anthrax is available for people in the military and others at high risk.

NIH: National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases

  • Anthrax
  • Anthrax - blood test
  • Anthrax Vaccine: What You Need to Know (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention)

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