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WARNING - GOLDFISH AUTOPSY PHOTOS - Mr Disabled 13.07.2013


Helen

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you are advised to not read further if you have issues with seeing dead fish and their autopsy photos.

it so happens that Mr Disabled was unfortunately becoming more disabled. in the last week, we was pinned to the top and unable to free himself from the surface. this enabled him to become an easy target to his tank mates and as opportunistic as they are, they wasted no time to begin the pecking.

after loosing a few scales to these attacks from the other fish, i decided to place him in a breeders basket to keep him safe. once there, i tried everything to better his position such as epsom laced meals, fresh steamed veggies, but nothing worked.

today, i decided that it was time to euth as his quality of life was zero.

once euthed, i decided to investigate so i can see where his problem stemmed from. thinking all along that he suffered a hard knock to the head during spawning that he developed neurological damage. but, it appears his brain was fine. what happened is the knock he did, made his swim bladder detach from the default position in his body. after a number of days, i began to see him behaving unusual, drunk like swimming & then resting slightly tilted, a few weeks later, more tilted and so on and so on until he began resting on his side completely. what was happening is that his swim bladder was working it's way from the top (near spine) all the way to the belly area to which it stayed.

there he stayed for a year and some. recently, i tried to correct his position not knowing what exactly was wrong with him. i believe after i saw the autopsy results today, that my attempt to correct him may have caused his condition to worsen. ie, he was up for about 2 consecutive days? the swim bladder being full of gas would have tried to raise to the top again, positioning itself into a not so ideal area, this may have caused the bladder to raise a little within his body, then more to the side & eventually pin him to the surface of the water. here are the pics from the autopsy.

1. the first incision from vent to head:

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2. a brief open to see what's directly behind the cut (here is where you see the fallen swim bladder)

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3. checking to see if the front swim bladder is still attached to the rear swim bladder as well as checking how healthy everything looks. everything checked above average.

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4. a better check to see if both swim bladders are still attached but i needed to remove the organs to see clearly:

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5. organs removed for examining, however, to me, they appeared the correct colours, size & looked rather healthy.

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6. removal & measurement of swim bladders:

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7. Dsc_8836_zps9621c545.jpg

8. after realizing how oddly the swim bladders were placed, i decided to see how straight his spine is once all the organs and swim bladders were removed. here you can see a relatively straight spine, irrespective of the amount of time he either lay flat or bent.

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9. vital organs in check:

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10. gills, eyes & mouth were all A+

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i didn't run anything under the microscope as my fish are investigated every other month & treated with 1 round of prazi every 4-6 weeks. last microscopic examination to the giants tank showed absolutely no parasites, not even rotifiers or cilia of any sort. nothing moved. slime coat was all clean. mouth swabs all clear as well as 1 gill sample i checked from Leonidis a few months ago, all clear.

so basically i had myself a 100% healthy fish with a silly swim bladder :(

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Darn swim bladder. :(

Very interesting Helen. I give you credit for being able to do that. I'm usually too much of a mushy mess myself after losing one to be strong enough to investigate so thoroughly.

We can certainly learn from your strength and I thank you for that. :hug

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thank you Una & Lisa. i don't investigate every fish that dies anymore. just the ones that i feel i need to learn from. there were so many unaswered questions regarding his physical disability that i needed to investigate. i once entertained the thought of having x-rays done, but i was convinced by a goldfish friend, now retired kokos member that my suggestion to it being neurological was most likely the cause. i do slightly kick myself now. i am not sure what could have been done to help his swim bladder, but, if i'd known that's all it was, i would have left him alone for sure and he might have still been ok.

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thank you Una & Lisa. i don't investigate every fish that dies anymore. just the ones that i feel i need to learn from. there were so many unaswered questions regarding his physical disability that i needed to investigate. i once entertained the thought of having x-rays done, but i was convinced by a goldfish friend, now retired kokos member that my suggestion to it being neurological was most likely the cause. i do slightly kick myself now. i am not sure what could have been done to help his swim bladder, but, if i'd known that's all it was, i would have left him alone for sure and he might have still been ok.

Wouldn't you need a sonogram to view the swim bladder? I didn't think it showed upon X-rays. I do autopsies on all my fish because my knowledge level is low and I am not fast when it comes to learning. It also gives me peace knowing what the cause was so I can use the death hopefully in a constructive way to keep the rest of them alive.
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i don't know, as i was swayed away from it, i never investigated it. so i really don't know.

Una, there are only so many clues you can get from an autopsy... following that, you need to investigate via microscope. i do both, autopsy and microscope investigations. 90% of the time, if you don't find an internal parasite, you have no idea what went wrong.

countless times i have found fish to have dissolved organs. this could be because we wait for the very last moment to death & the damage is just beyond investigating, leading us to not fully understand or not being able to investigate the actual cause.

it's tough because they're our pets and we have the best intention to keep them alive as long as possible and treat them because we remain optimistic that something we treat them with will help them overcome the problem. but, during this time, if what is the cause is not being treated as we don't know what it is, it might be too late for investigation.

i hope that makes sense.

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WOW Helen that was sad and fascinating. When I had done one with my fish radar years ago, his was popped on one side.

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Una, you can do X-rays. The bladders, being sacs of air, would show up in the X-ray the way lungs do.

Molly posted a pic of an X-ray of her sinker ranchu a while back, where it showed the posterior sac having been deflated.

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thanks friends, the most difficult part was euthing him. after that, it was just needing to learn what his problems were. more interested to learn if his spine was bent, organs compromised etc.. but none were. it was all due to his swim bladder. i am satisfied that this autopsy gave me the closure i needed. i feel sad, i should have done the x-rays. i most likely would have left him alone or, would have tried to rehabilitate him for longer. who knows? perhaps the rehabilitation might have moved the swimbladder back into position after long term attempts.

what's done is done, we do things like this to learn, and learning is what it brought me.

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an image from this study was posted to koko's by David, koko username 'Ichthius' in Molly's thread. it's an x-ray of various fish. the position within the body of where the swim bladder was situated is what appealed to me. an x-ray would have been plenty to satisfy my cuirosities as to what was happening to Mr Disabled.

http://www.biolreprod.org/content/72/3/510.full.pdf+html

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Thank you for sharing and I am sorry you lost him. I learn so much from your videos and your advice in the forum. Your dedication is amazing. I also admit I covet your calicoes in you tube and watch one of your videos when I get stressed out at work! They are all so beautiful!

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Helen, Again, I'm so sorry for the loss of Mr. Disabled. I've leaned a lot from this thread and thank you again for sharing your knowledge with us.

:hug:hug

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thank you :heart

thank you Cheryl, for advising that you weren't able to reply where this thread was previously posted. now, thanks to you, we have this "surgical procedure" sub-forum dedicated to all procedures considered surgery (with or without sedation) can be posted and discussed with the public :)

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I'm sorry Helen :(

thank you for posting this though.... I really wanted to do this with Puff when I euthanized him, but just couldn't bring myself to. It is very interesting to me to see the organs etc., so thank you for posting. Stupid swim bladders!

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Oh Helen, I'm so very sorry about Mr Disabled :hug This thread was like being in an anatomy class (but less stinky)! I really appreciate your ability to be so scientific with your pet. I am sure many(including myself) will learn and benefit from this. Thank you so much! :goodpost

:rip: Mr Disabled

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