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Coding with Kyle: Core buildup

June 18, 2021
Kyle Summerford guides fellow office managers through the tricky world of dental coding in this monthly feature.
Kyle L. Summerford, Editorial Director

This month we feature the code for core buildup. This code is very tricky and relies solely on narratives to help obtain reimbursement.         

D2950: Core buildup, including any pins when required

Purpose: To build up tooth structure when there is not enough retention to support a crown (pfm)

  • Submitting a claim with x-rays is not enough to facilitate coverage and payment.
  • This code should be applied only when rebuilding the tooth structure to support a crown.
  • Dental insurance companies will refer to the patient's plan limitations and exclusions when considering the dental claim.
  • This procedure has a limitation of once per lifetime, per tooth.
  • Make sure to include a narrative reporting percentage of tooth after tooth prep.
  • A narrative should be included indicating “core buildup is necessary in order to properly restore tooth #__ a crown prep has been performed and will be inserted."
  • If the tooth is root canal-treated, indicate that endo treatment has been completed and a buildup is necessary.
  • Pre-op and post-op x-rays must always accompany the claim form.