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Swimbladder Autopsy


wve

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3c4bad916b30898644ca16527625cbb5.jpg

One of my red and black orandas recently died of what I suspected was a swimbladder disorder. The first thing that led me to believe this was that the fish appeared extremely fat and his scales protruded quite severely from his skin. He also suffered from buoyancy issues in the run up to his death. He eventually stopped eating entirely and refused to venture from a small corner between the inlet to my filter and a cluster of fake plants. It was clear that he was in a lot of pain and his body seemed to be expanding more and more as the days passed. I finally euthanised him with clove oil, but was desperate to find out what was actually going on inside his body to cause this problem, so, I performed my very first autopsy! As you can see, the above image is that of Po's swimbladder. Being my first autopsy, I really didn't know what to expect and thought I would turn to the goldfish community in the hope that I may receive some answers. Is there any clear problem with the shown swimbladder that could have caused the problems described earlier? Everything else seemed pretty normal from the eyes of a novice 'autopsier' and there was no sign of parasites in his body cavity.

Thanks in advance for any answers!

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From my limited experience, the deflated lobe is not a good sign. That alone would cause buoyancy issues. As for the other symptoms, I'm not too sure if the deflated lobe would cause that. Others will certainly chime in here with their experience.

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That swim bladder would explain the buoyancy issues.  However, the looking fat with scales protruding sounds like dropsy to me.  With dropsy, he would definitely lose his appetite and they often find a "sweet spot" in the tank with little to no current so they can rest.  Sounds like that is what he was doing in the plants.  Did you google "dropsy" at all?  You may find the fish with dropsy look very similar to your fish.

 

 

Sorry for your loss.  :(

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That swim bladder would explain the buoyancy issues. However, the looking fat with scales protruding sounds like dropsy to me. With dropsy, he would definitely lose his appetite and they often find a "sweet spot" in the tank with little to no current so they can rest. Sounds like that is what he was doing in the plants. Did you google "dropsy" at all? You may find the fish with dropsy look very similar to your fish.

Sorry for your loss. :(

I have lost many fish to dropsy in the past but was lead to believe that it was only a symptom of many possible things - swimbladder issues and constipation being included. Po was also housed with other goldfish which didn't seem to have any issues thus making me think that the problem was not bacterial or in any way contagious, hence the autopsy.

Thanks so much for your input.

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From my limited experience, the deflated lobe is not a good sign. That alone would cause buoyancy issues. As for the other symptoms, I'm not too sure if the deflated lobe would cause that. Others will certainly chime in here with their experience.

I'm assuming that the smaller lobe is the deflated one ??

Thanks for the input!

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Sorry for your loss :(

Thanks! [emoji4]

It really is horrible to be in the situation where you either have to end your fishes life yourself, or let it live on in pain for an uncertain period of time. It was a hard decision to make, but judging by what people have said about 'deflated lobes' and other issues, I think it was for the best [emoji5]️[emoji5]️

Thanks for your response and I wish you the best of luck with your own fish!

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From my limited experience, the deflated lobe is not a good sign. That alone would cause buoyancy issues. As for the other symptoms, I'm not too sure if the deflated lobe would cause that. Others will certainly chime in here with their experience.

I'm assuming that the smaller lobe is the deflated one ??

Thanks for the input!

 

Yes. Ideally both lobes are inflated. Was the small lobe deflated when you first saw it? Could it have been punctured during your autopsy?

Edited by LisaCGold
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From my limited experience, the deflated lobe is not a good sign. That alone would cause buoyancy issues. As for the other symptoms, I'm not too sure if the deflated lobe would cause that. Others will certainly chime in here with their experience.

I'm assuming that the smaller lobe is the deflated one ??

Thanks for the input!

Yes. Ideally both lobes are inflated.

Ah! Okay then! Thanks so much

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From my limited experience, the deflated lobe is not a good sign. That alone would cause buoyancy issues. As for the other symptoms, I'm not too sure if the deflated lobe would cause that. Others will certainly chime in here with their experience.

I'm assuming that the smaller lobe is the deflated one ??

Thanks for the input!

Yes. Ideally both lobes are inflated.

Ah! Okay then! Thanks so much

 

You responded quickly. I edited my response, see above.

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From my limited experience, the deflated lobe is not a good sign. That alone would cause buoyancy issues. As for the other symptoms, I'm not too sure if the deflated lobe would cause that. Others will certainly chime in here with their experience.

I'm assuming that the smaller lobe is the deflated one ??

Thanks for the input!

Yes. Ideally both lobes are inflated. Was the small lobe deflated when you first saw it? Could it have been punctured during your autopsy?
I didn't use any tools or anything other than my fingers to remove the swimbladder from the fish. The fish was a good 6" in length and the point of incision was at quite a distance from the swimbladder, or at least not close enough to be able to reach it and puncture it. Edited by wve
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From my limited experience, the deflated lobe is not a good sign. That alone would cause buoyancy issues. As for the other symptoms, I'm not too sure if the deflated lobe would cause that. Others will certainly chime in here with their experience.

I'm assuming that the smaller lobe is the deflated one ??

Thanks for the input!

Yes. Ideally both lobes are inflated. Was the small lobe deflated when you first saw it? Could it have been punctured during your autopsy?
I didn't use any tools or anything other than my fingers to remove the swimbladder from the fish. The fish was a good 6" in length and the point of incision was at quite a distance from the swimbladder, or at least not close enough to be able to reach it and puncture it.

 

Here is what a goldfish swimbladder looks like when normal:

http://www.biology-online.org/user_files/Image/Anatomy/airbladder%20F02.jpg

 

There are many reasons for a lobe to deflate. You can do a search on the internet for the information.

 

You are a brave soul to do an autopsy on your goldfish, but I think that it is a good way to learn about your fish.

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From my limited experience, the deflated lobe is not a good sign. That alone would cause buoyancy issues. As for the other symptoms, I'm not too sure if the deflated lobe would cause that. Others will certainly chime in here with their experience.

I'm assuming that the smaller lobe is the deflated one ??

Thanks for the input!

Yes. Ideally both lobes are inflated. Was the small lobe deflated when you first saw it? Could it have been punctured during your autopsy?
I didn't use any tools or anything other than my fingers to remove the swimbladder from the fish. The fish was a good 6" in length and the point of incision was at quite a distance from the swimbladder, or at least not close enough to be able to reach it and puncture it.

Here is what a goldfish swimbladder looks like when normal:

http://www.biology-online.org/user_files/Image/Anatomy/airbladder%20F02.jpg

There are many reasons for a lobe to deflate. You can do a search on the internet for the information.

You are a brave soul to do an autopsy on your goldfish, but I think that it is a good way to learn about your fish.

I am really grateful for your input. It really has helped. I will make sure to do some research into that as well! [emoji12]
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That swim bladder would explain the buoyancy issues. However, the looking fat with scales protruding sounds like dropsy to me. With dropsy, he would definitely lose his appetite and they often find a "sweet spot" in the tank with little to no current so they can rest. Sounds like that is what he was doing in the plants. Did you google "dropsy" at all? You may find the fish with dropsy look very similar to your fish.

Sorry for your loss. :(

I have lost many fish to dropsy in the past but was lead to believe that it was only a symptom of many possible things - swimbladder issues and constipation being included. Po was also housed with other goldfish which didn't seem to have any issues thus making me think that the problem was not bacterial or in any way contagious, hence the autopsy.

Thanks so much for your input.

 

 

It is a symptom of something else going on.  I think most often it's a bacterial infection (often secondary to some other infection such as parasites, etc).  I don't think I've ever heard of constipation causing full blown dropsy.  :idont I've had several fish with dropsy who were housed with other fish that did not develop dropsy.  I've treated dropsy successfully several times.  Having said that I will add "Once a dropsy, always a dropsy" cuz it does tend to recur and the fish usually doesn't seem to be as healthy as before the first bout of dropsy.

 

In any case, if any of your future fish should develop the pineconing appearance, post here and we'd be happy to help you treat if you're interested.  :D

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That swim bladder would explain the buoyancy issues. However, the looking fat with scales protruding sounds like dropsy to me. With dropsy, he would definitely lose his appetite and they often find a "sweet spot" in the tank with little to no current so they can rest. Sounds like that is what he was doing in the plants. Did you google "dropsy" at all? You may find the fish with dropsy look very similar to your fish.

Sorry for your loss. :(

I have lost many fish to dropsy in the past but was lead to believe that it was only a symptom of many possible things - swimbladder issues and constipation being included. Po was also housed with other goldfish which didn't seem to have any issues thus making me think that the problem was not bacterial or in any way contagious, hence the autopsy.

Thanks so much for your input.

It is a symptom of something else going on. I think most often it's a bacterial infection (often secondary to some other infection such as parasites, etc). I don't think I've ever heard of constipation causing full blown dropsy. :idont I've had several fish with dropsy who were housed with other fish that did not develop dropsy. I've treated dropsy successfully several times. Having said that I will add "Once a dropsy, always a dropsy" cuz it does tend to recur and the fish usually doesn't seem to be as healthy as before the first bout of dropsy.

In any case, if any of your future fish should develop the pineconing appearance, post here and we'd be happy to help you treat if you're interested. :D

Sorry for the slow reply [emoji16] thanks for your input! Po didn't seem constipated at any point, that was just what I heard was one of the possible causes. He had a pretty high fibre diet so the chances of constipation were pretty slim given he was pretty regular [emoji6][emoji6]! I really appreciate all of the help I've had from everyone. I will make sure that if I do encounter any problems further down the line, I will come here first! The help is AMAZING! [emoji39]
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