I am having an issue with a medical bill for a basic splint I got for a broken elbow. I am being charged $341.79 for a visit that literally consisted of about 2 or 3 minutes with the doctor followed by about 2 minutes with a PA that applied a $26 off the shelf 3M splint to my arm.

I contacted my insurance company twice and one time they weren't sure and another they said that casts and splints are considered surgery (even though there seem to actually be coding specifically for applying a splint and couldn't offer any further explanation.)

This is an absolutely ridiculous charge for doing nothing that someone with fairly basic first aid training couldn't have done. Is this actually legit or is this something I should try to fight?

  • This is off-topic as it is a legal issue.
    – John
    Oct 14, 2016 at 7:33
  • 2
    @jjosaur I wasn't sure if it would be or not. There seems to be almost zero publicly available information on coding so I'm not sure how anyone is supposed to navigate this or verify their billing. Perhaps a more general question about that would work? Oct 14, 2016 at 13:01
  • 1
    I'm voting to close this question as off-topic because as JJosaur said it is about a legal matter not health per se.
    – Lucky
    Oct 16, 2016 at 15:32

1 Answer 1


From what I've been able to gather, it appears that treatment of a broken bone is in the same group of codes as surgery because of the after care. The coding is supposed to include follow up care for 90 days if the info I found was correct.

It appears it should only be applying a splint if the splint is a one off without after care.

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