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Jul 22
UCB Statement on Non-Radiographic Axial Spondyloarthritis Diagnostic Code Update

Today, UCB issued the following statement jointly from Camille Lee, Head of U.S. Immunology, and Jeff Stark, M.D., Head of U.S. Medical Immunology, on the recent update by the ICD-10 Coordination and Maintenance Committee (a subcommittee of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention) to endorse and make public that non-radiographic axial spondyloarthritis (nr-axSpA) will be formally indexed to ICD-10 sub category M46.8; these changes will be effective for diagnoses starting October 1, 2020 and more information is available on the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Service (CMS) website which outlines the specific coding changes in greater detail:

“We’re pleased with the Committee’s decision regarding these important diagnostic code updates for patients living with non-radiographic axial spondyloarthritis (nr-AxSpA). This is an exciting update for people living with nr-axSpA, an underrecognized and undertreated condition, who have often been invisible and indistinguishable within the current coding and healthcare system. Aligned with our commitment to delivering value for patients, we believe updated diagnostic coding to specifically support these patients is a critical aspect of ensuring they receive the recognition and care they need.

“We appreciate the extraordinary efforts of professional rheumatology organizations and patient advocacy groups to make this ICD-10 code update possible for rheumatology patients and their providers. We’re hopeful this serves as a foundational catalyst to advance early and accurate diagnosis and treatment of non-radiographic axial spondyloarthritis for patients who need it.”


About Non-Radiographic Axial Spondyloarthritis

A chronic inflammatory condition, nr-axSpA mainly affects the spine and sacroiliac joints and is often undiagnosed and not appropriately treated. In nr-axSpA, definitive evidence of the disease is not evident on an x-ray. Disease onset typically begins in early adulthood and causes chronic and debilitating back pain, stiffness and fatigue, often having a profound impact on patients’ lives.

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