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Can Fish Become Immune To Meds?


Athena

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I needed a larger tank for my goldies and they came with 6 schooling fish. I transferred the fish to another tank and (don't worry) I cleaned the big tank and made sure all parameters were normal for my goldies. I was a little paranoid because this guy said he had lots of problems with disease. Turns out the more I talked to him the more I found out that he had used Jungle Fungus Clear and the Ick medicine alot on them. I also noticed that when I got those 6 schooling fish they had mouth fungus. So I treated them with that same medicine but nothing. I'm currently treating them with salt but I think that it's weird that the medicine which is not expired wouldn't help at all. Does anyone know if fish can become resistant to medicine?? :unsure:

P.S. My goldies are happy and healthy.

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Guest tooterfish

yes, medications can produce immunity when used in excess.

just like in humans, there is a level at which the medication will no longer kill off the infection, and stronger and stronger medication will need to be used.

in some instances, it is the 'bug' changing its genetics to withstand the medication

so that that particular medication is no longer effective, and another will have to be used to eliminate the infection.

in your situation, where the previous owner did use those products on a regular basis, your fish may be immune to the healing properties (or the bugs are)

you'll want to look into another produvt that will treat this infection (mouth fungus)

a true antibiotic product.

you'll want to be sure to treat with 2 runs of the medication (example Mardel product Maracyn says to treat for 5 days in the instructions, you'll want to run it fir a full 10 days) to make sure all of the bugs are gone

if you are completely sure of your diagnosis (some look like fungus but are truely bacterial)

and after 2 runs of the medication, the condition returns, you'll have to look at a different stronger medication to help your fish.

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I am sure there are plenty of immunities that develop, varying greatly between meds and infections.

Fish develop immunities to various diseases and parasites, also. So a tank may appear to be healthy, but if you add a new fish, the new one instantly becomes ill with various pathogens...... In the same vein, if you introduce a fish that is carrying a latent problem to which it is immune, the tank of fish exposed to this new fish can become "sick".

Never partially treat anything - give it full course of treatment, even if the fish appear to be healthy after the first couple of treatments. Do not abort any treatment, even if you feel that there is a better one that you would have liked to have tried. For example, you treat for parasite A with a med that contains an antibiotic to ward off secondary infections. You realize that the med is not made for that specific parasite, abort the treatment after 2 rounds and proceed to use a med B that is specifically made to eradicate the parasite you want. But the med B has either no antibiotic or a different antibiotic. The bacteria has now had a non-lethal dose of antibiotic A - setting it up to mutate until it is resistant.

If your "fish guy" has treated with various meds, and failed to finish that which he is treating for, he could have easily created "super bugs" that are resistant. If he is treating and selling fish from a treated tank, it is entirely possible that there are fish coming and going from that tank that have had partial treatments, opening up the door to resistant disease.

It may be extremely smart of you to see if you can find an alternative treatment - not just different brand, but different ingrediants.

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So I am trying 1 level tablespoon of salt for every 5 gallons of water and raising the temperature to 80 degrees for 24 to36 hours. How long do I wait to try a true antibiotic and I'm pretty sure that it's a mouth fungus but how can I be totally sure? Any suggestions?

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Guest tooterfish

start here with the symptoms.

answering the questions in the red box helps us help you.

add all information you can about the appearance of the fish :)

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Symptoms: Very active, small white almost bump looking thing on 5 of their mouths and wooly, cottony stuff on the sixth mouth, eating well, water params normal, weekly water change

P.S. I've never had problems with my goldies like this!! Grrrr.

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Well the treatment seems to be reducing the white spots on their mouths but it's very slow in this reduction. I guess I will continue unless it gets worse. They seem to be even more active now which is good.

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