2022 ICD-10-CM Code S40.859

Superficial foreign body of unspecified upper arm

Version 2021

Not Valid for Submission

ICD-10:S40.859
Short Description:Superficial foreign body of unspecified upper arm
Long Description:Superficial foreign body of unspecified upper arm

Code Classification

  • Injury, poisoning and certain other consequences of external causes (S00–T98)
    • Injuries to the shoulder and upper arm (S40-S49)
      • Superficial injury of shoulder and upper arm (S40)

S40.859 is a non-specific and non-billable diagnosis code code, consider using a code with a higher level of specificity for a diagnosis of superficial foreign body of unspecified upper arm. The code is not specific and is NOT valid for the year 2022 for the submission of HIPAA-covered transactions. Category or Header define the heading of a category of codes that may be further subdivided by the use of 4th, 5th, 6th or 7th characters.

The ICD-10-CM code S40.859 might also be used to specify conditions or terms like foreign body of skin of upper arm, splinter of axilla, without major open wound, splinter of axilla, without major open wound, splinter of axilla, without major open wound, infected, splinter of shoulder and upper arm, without major wound, infected , splinter of shoulder, without major open wound, etc.

Unspecified diagnosis codes like S40.859 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.

Coding Guidelines

The appropriate 7th character is to be added to each code from block Superficial injury of shoulder and upper arm (S40). Use the following options for the aplicable episode of care:

Specific Coding for Superficial foreign body of unspecified upper arm

Non-specific codes like S40.859 require more digits to indicate the appropriate level of specificity. Consider using any of the following ICD-10 codes with a higher level of specificity when coding for superficial foreign body of unspecified upper arm:

  • BILLABLE CODE - Use S40.859A for initial encounter
  • BILLABLE CODE - Use S40.859D for subsequent encounter
  • BILLABLE CODE - Use S40.859S for sequela

Approximate Synonyms

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

Information for Patients


Foreign Bodies

If you've ever gotten a splinter or had sand in your eye, you've had experience with a foreign body. A foreign body is something that is stuck inside you but isn't supposed to be there. You may inhale or swallow a foreign body, or you may get one from an injury to almost any part of your body. Foreign bodies are more common in small children, who sometimes stick things in their mouths, ears, and noses.

Some foreign bodies, like a small splinter, do not cause serious harm. Inhaled or swallowed foreign bodies may cause choking or bowel obstruction and may require medical care.


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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)