The National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE) has issued full guidance to the NHS in England, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland on IRE for the treatment of pancreatic cancer.

  • Description

    Irreversible electroporation is a process that uses electrical pulses to kill cancer cells. It is applied directly to a pancreatic cancer tumour through special needles. The main difference between this procedure and thermal techniques for destroying tumours is that it does not produce extreme heat or cold. This means that it may cause less damage to healthy surrounding tissues than some other procedures.

  • OPCS4.6 Code(s)

    J66.8 Other specified therapeutic percutaneous operations on pancreas

    Y12.3 Electrochemotherapy to lesion of organ NOC

    Y53.- Approach to organ under image control

    In addition a code from the ICD-10 category C25 Malignant neoplasm of pancreas is assigned.

    The NHS Classifications Service has advised NICE that currently these are the most suitable OPCS-4 codes to describe this procedure. The OPCS-4 classification is designed to categorise procedures for analysis and it is not always possible to identify a procedure uniquely.


    The NHS Classifications Service of the Health and Social Care Information Centre is the central definitive source for clinical coding guidance and determines the coding standards associated with the classifications (OPCS-4 and ICD-10) to be used across the NHS.  The NHS Classifications Service and NICE work collaboratively to ensure the most appropriate classification codes are provided.


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