2021 ICD-10-CM Code K70.9

Alcoholic liver disease, unspecified

Version 2021
Billable Code
Unspecified Code
Adult Diagnoses
MS-DRG Mapping

Valid for Submission

K70.9 is a billable diagnosis code used to specify a medical diagnosis of alcoholic liver disease, unspecified. The code K70.9 is valid during the fiscal year 2021 from October 01, 2020 through September 30, 2021 for the submission of HIPAA-covered transactions.

The ICD-10-CM code K70.9 might also be used to specify conditions or terms like alcoholic liver damage or chronic alcoholic liver disease.

The code K70.9 is applicable to adult patients aged 15 through 124 years inclusive. It is clinically and virtually impossible to use this code on a patient outside the stated age range.

Unspecified diagnosis codes like K70.9 are acceptable when clinical information is unknown or not available about a particular condition. Although a more specific code is preferable, unspecified codes should be used when such codes most accurately reflect what is known about a patient's condition. Specific diagnosis codes should not be used if not supported by the patient's medical record.

ICD-10:K70.9
Short Description:Alcoholic liver disease, unspecified
Long Description:Alcoholic liver disease, unspecified

Code Classification

Index to Diseases and Injuries

The Index to Diseases and Injuries is an alphabetical listing of medical terms, with each term mapped to one or more ICD-10 code(s). The following references for the code K70.9 are found in the index:

Code Edits

The Medicare Code Editor (MCE) detects and reports errors in the coding of claims data. The following ICD-10 Code Edits are applicable to this code:

Approximate Synonyms

The following clinical terms are approximate synonyms or lay terms that might be used to identify the correct diagnosis code:

Clinical Information

Convert K70.9 to ICD-9 Code

The General Equivalency Mapping (GEM) crosswalk indicates an approximate mapping between the ICD-10 code K70.9 its ICD-9 equivalent. The approximate mapping means there is not an exact match between the ICD-10 code and the ICD-9 code and the mapped code is not a precise representation of the original code.

Information for Patients


Alcoholism and Alcohol Abuse

Also called: Alcohol dependence

For most adults, moderate alcohol use is probably not harmful. However, about 18 million adult Americans have an alcohol use disorder (AUD). This means that their drinking causes distress and harm. It includes alcoholism and alcohol abuse.

Alcoholism, or alcohol dependence, is a disease that causes

With alcohol abuse, you are not physically dependent, but you still have a serious problem. The drinking may cause problems at home, work, or school. It may cause you to put yourself in dangerous situations, or lead to legal or social problems.

Another common problem is binge drinking. It is drinking about five or more drinks in two hours for men. For women, it is about four or more drinks in two hours.

Too much alcohol is dangerous. Heavy drinking can increase the risk of certain cancers. It can cause damage to the liver, brain, and other organs. Drinking during pregnancy can harm your baby. Alcohol also increases the risk of death from car crashes, injuries, homicide, and suicide.

You may have an AUD if you can answer yes to two or more of these questions:

In the past year, have you

If you have any of these symptoms, your drinking may already be a cause for concern. The more symptoms you have, the more serious the problem is. If you think you might have an AUD, see your health care provider for an evaluation. Your provider can help make a treatment plan, prescribe medicines, and if needed, give you treatment referrals.

NIH: National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism


[Learn More in MedlinePlus]

Liver Diseases

Also called: Hepatic disease

Your liver is the largest organ inside your body. It helps your body digest food, store energy, and remove poisons.

There are many kinds of liver diseases:

Symptoms of liver disease can vary, but they often include swelling of the abdomen and legs, bruising easily, changes in the color of your stool and urine, and jaundice, or yellowing of the skin and eyes. Sometimes there are no symptoms. Tests such as imaging tests and liver function tests can check for liver damage and help to diagnose liver diseases.


[Learn More in MedlinePlus]

Code History

  • FY 2021 - No Change, effective from 10/1/2020 through 9/30/2021
  • FY 2020 - No Change, effective from 10/1/2019 through 9/30/2020
  • FY 2019 - No Change, effective from 10/1/2018 through 9/30/2019
  • FY 2018 - No Change, effective from 10/1/2017 through 9/30/2018
  • FY 2017 - No Change, effective from 10/1/2016 through 9/30/2017
  • FY 2016 - New Code, effective from 10/1/2015 through 9/30/2016 (First year ICD-10-CM implemented into the HIPAA code set)