T71: Asphyxiation

You had a life-threatening shortage of oxygen.

There are a variety of reasons why there may be a life-threatening shortage of oxygen. For example, the oxygen level in the environment might be too low. But it may also be that you are unable to breathe properly. This is the case when the airways are blocked or constricted, for example. A life-threatening shortage of oxygen may also occur with certain illnesses or poisonings. For example, certain poisonings can prevent enough oxygen getting into the blood.

A life-threatening shortage of oxygen can cause a circulatory collapse. The heart pumps blood through the blood vessels to the body. The blood then flows back to the heart through other blood vessels. Together, the heart and the blood vessels form the blood circulatory system. Blood supplies oxygen and nutrients to the tissue in the body. With a circulatory collapse, the blood is no longer pumped around the body. When a circulatory collapse is caused by a lack of oxygen, it is called asphyxiation.

Additional indicator

On medical documents, the ICD code is often appended by letters that indicate the diagnostic certainty or the affected side of the body.

  • G: Confirmed diagnosis
  • V: Tentative diagnosis
  • Z: Condition after
  • A: Excluded diagnosis
  • L: Left
  • R: Right
  • B: Both sides

Further information


This information is not intended for self-diagnosis and does not replace professional medical advice from a doctor. If you find an ICD code on a personal medical document, please also note the additional indicator used for diagnostic confidence.
Your doctor will assist you with any health-related questions and explain the ICD diagnosis code to you in a direct consultation if necessary.


Provided by the non-profit organization “Was hab’ ich?” gemeinnützige GmbH on behalf of the Federal Ministry of Health (BMG).