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rocmills

Battling Mouth Rot

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Honestly. I think she is being over medicated. There is no need to keep feeding antibiotic food. As I said, food with vitamins to re-build the immunity are key. She will not eat in medicated water if the medication is wrong. If a medication is wrong you know by the fishes reaction. I would say she is having that reaction.

The thing is , antibiotics supress the immune system completely. They should not really be used back to back because of this. Antibiotics are VERY harsh on the system. The medicated food was quite plenty that you finished the bottle of. That was plenty.

In my honest opinion, Lucy needs healing time with no meds at all now I feel. Farther antibiotics and medications may just be pushing her over her limits.

I would take all the meds out and low salt the water to 0.1%. Perfect water so she regains her appetite and then feed her some regular food.

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Alright... will stop all medications as of yesterday. I was sick as a dog yesterday and today, but as soon as I can move without wanting to throw up, I will give her a complete water change, upgrade her filter, and keep her in plain tank water for a while. Gave her some peas this morning, but there were still no poopies in the water last I checked so I don't think she's started eating again.

With any luck, the fresh water (with .1% salt) will perk her up at least enough that she starts eating again.

--Rpc

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Yes, that's the idea. Sorry you've been sick :(

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Okay, did a complete water change and upgraded her filter. Water salted to .1% (ran out of salt, too, dang it) and treated with extra Stress Coat.

Honestly, I think she looks worse, but she's behaving more normally again. She got lethargic while the tetracycline was in the water, don't think she cared for that at all - my bad, glad she only had to endure it for a couple of days.

Found a couple of small poopies when I cleaned the tank, so maybe she is eating a wee bit.

I will give her partial water changes every day and then I guess it's up to Lucy now. No more meds in the water, no more medicated food, just good clean water, her crisps and some veggies.

I'm still feeling under the weather myself, but I'll try to get a new pic of her now that the water is so nice and clear.

--Roc

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Another Question!

We're fairly certain now that whatever may have infected her is now dead and/or gone, right? And we're just waiting for her to heal up?

Do you think she could go back in the big tank with the others, or should I keep her isolated?

Just wondering...

--Roc

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Update:

Lucy got a complete water change on Sunday, new water was treated with StressCoat and .1% salt.

She has received a 50% water change each day since Sunday (today makes the third change). Each time I change out the water it is treated as above with StressCoat and salt.

There is no doubt that the infection, or whatever it is, is getting worse. The reddness has once again spread up to her nostril and is moving towards her eye. This happened about a month back when I took her off the antibiotics for a few days. She is losing scales - about 1 a day. She did like the peas and is eating a tiny amount each day... but the little poopies I find are more what you would expect from a small tropical fish, nothing at all near what she usually produces.

I know she shouldn't get any more meds, I also know that I am at my wits end. I guess this weekend I should go out and hunt for some clove oil and spend some time reading through the euthanasia thread here. I don't know what else to do. I don't want her to suffer.

--Roc

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I do understand your dilemma. It has been 3 months. You have not seen improvement and when she comes off the antibiotics the symptoms worsen slightly although the antibiotic treatments have not cured this.

I think Lucy is definitely battling with a very low immunity. It doesn't help that she is not eating much. Could you consider giving her a little more time to get her appatite back. What are you offering her besides peas? Her old food she use to like? Shrimps like brine or myosis or krill? These are big treats and smell yummy ..to fish !

As for the rotting mouth itself, I am beginning to wonder if it isn't viral :( . A pappiloma herpes type dermatitis for which there is no cure but which can heal up (to recur at times of stress) with strong immune response. Antibiotics will not work on viral dermatitis but since the lesions are prone to secondary bacterial pathogens, they would hold the rot without allowing for opportune bacteria to gain entry to the weakened slime coat.

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Trinket,

Two things:

1. I have come to trust in your guidance and knowledge.

2. I have absolutely no desire to put Lucy down.

I fear for her eye and her suffering, only.

She is being fed peas and her regular crisps every day. The peas have to be squished a bit because her mouth is so swollen she can't get a full half pea in it.

I am willing to purchase and try whatever foods, treats, etc. that you advise. Should the shrimpies be frozen, fresh/ive... what about live tubifex worms?

I will continue with the water changes (we do not turn her light on, is this good or bad? thought i read it was less stressful for them with the light out all the time).

I also picked up a bottle of something called Cycle that is supposed to jump start the tank cycling process. I bought it for the large tank... should I use it on Lucy's tank as well?

--Roc

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Yes, low light is less stressful but some light is healthy in the day time. Room light is fine, just avoid bright tank lights.

I shouldn't feed tubifex. They can easily bring in disease. But frozen cubes of mysis and brine shrimp are usually fine and she may like them because they are small, easier to suck in. They float around and need some hunting down though.

I also have one other suggestion for you and Lucy. Bear with me.

There is something else that might be worth trying. I don't want to raise hopes but I have had a good look at the pic you posted with a magnifying glass.

There is no indication here that the infection (be it viral or bacterial) has internalised. The rest of her body seems fine. There is no sepsis. No weight loss or darkening, discoloration of the skin to suggest that this is anything but a localised infection.The affected area is stubborn.

All these conditions are in fact conditions that are favorable for the use of melafix. Superficial but stubborn non healing"wound" or "ulcer" type abrasions. It might be worth one last try and is quite harmless either way, effective or not.

You have tried pimafix (pimenta racemosa) but have you tried melafix (tea treeoil)? If nothing else it might soothe the area and stop farther spreading to the eye. I think its worth adding a few drops- as directed- at water changes if you can get some.

If this is viral, many viral (cauliflower like) lesions get infected and the red areas may indicate that. Melafix would help heal that red part and because it is not antibiotic it will not supress immunity.

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Trinket,

Picked up Melafix and frozen mysis on my way home from work tonight, added both to tank as soon as I got home. Lucy took to the mysis immediately and I have fed her two cubes this evening.

I have a new question... I have been doing partial water changes everyday, but the instructions on the Melafix seem to imply that I should not change the water for 7 days. Is this correct, or should I merely add extra extra Melafix when I change the water?

--Roc

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Melafix has a build up effect and is also somewhat absorbed through the media (esp carbon, carbon part should be removed) so it is a repeated dose for 8 days max. Then a break with no melafix -as after 8 days it can be hard on the liver.I don't know which product you have and what the directions say but there is never harm in changing water out and replacing meds exactly according to the percentage of water you took out..it is just that it's too tricky for many people and your average fishkeeper wants as little work to do as possible! But ammonia and nitrite free, low nitrate water always comes before any meds so take your cue from those readings :)

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The wording of the directions confused me is all; it said to "repeat for 7 days then perform a 25% water change". It was the then which threw me. Of course, it makes sense that as long as I put back what I took out and perform the normal dosage, all should be good.

I'm already adding salt, StressCoat, and a capful of Melafix with every water change, adding another half a cap is hardly going to be a chore ;) . Honestly, if you told me I could save Lucy by shaving my head, I'd have the razor in my hand in under 60 seconds.

She is eating lots of the mysis, and there were plenty of poops in the tank this evening. Mouth looks horrible, and I can hardly stand looking at it. Poor thing. However, I didn't see any scales in the tank tonight, and I take that as a good sign. Her behavior does not seem to indicate any undue distress or depression, and I also take those as good signs. If she's not ready to give up, neither am I.

--Roc

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Good. I'm not ready to give up on her either :heart . Please believe me that it is amazing what a strong fish immunity can do. I have seen one of my fish quarantined for 3 months. I tried Maracyn (or its equivalent) and medicated food. He did not improve. I stopped all medication and fed him up. He is now, not better, but coping and much more active! No more bottom sitting. I can't believe how he has fought. You gave Lucy a good start in life, she has grown and is strong and her immunity will bounce back in no time. If it is viral, this will eventually recede. I am fairly sure. She is definitely not giving up the fight. Her problem is a skin problem. Skin problems are related to the amount of antibodies available in any area of skin= immunity is number one to fight them.

I am so glad she eats the mysis. This is great news. I hope the melafix will help heal the red areas at least.

One more thing -if it is viral. Skin sloughs off and the virus is in the water and needs removing. Keep up the water changes. Don't return her. Even viral things are infectious.

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Trinket,

Okay, I will keep her isolated. Easier to treat the smaller tank anyway.

As a side note, I want to say that when I first removed Lucy from the main tank, Big Rick spent about 4 days appearing to be depressed. Clamped fins, sitting at the bottom of the tank off in the corner and not swimming around, shunning the other fishies... he would only get active at feeding time or if I put a net, hand, or gravel vac in the water. He finally got over it, and he showed no external signs of anything physical being wrong with him... I swear, he missed Lucy and was depressed! And I also wonder if Lucy misses having company... it has to be boring as all get-out to be stuck in an un-decorated tank with no break in the dull scenary except for an air stone.

Anyway, back to the matter at hand... Carbon has been removed from the filter. Continuing with daily 50% water changes, treating with Melafix, .1% salt, and StressCoat. I am giving her two cubes of mysis each day - one in the morning and one in the evening after the water change. Still no sign of scales falling off, whew.

Tonight, I will ask my husband to help me take another photo. She didn't seem to mind when I held her in my hands out of the tank earlier this week when I wanted a better look at her mouth - so, with any luck, I might get an open air photo for you to look at.

Trinket, once again, I cannot thank you enough for the help, advice, and support that you are providing. If you were here in the States, I'd buy you lunch or at least send you some flowers and chocolate. You are a fishie hero, to be sure!

--Roc

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Trinket, once again, I cannot thank you enough for the help, advice, and support that you are providing. If you were here in the States, I'd buy you lunch or at least send you some flowers and chocolate. You are a fishie hero, to be sure!

--Roc

:exactly:#1:thumb::flex::thumbs::bingo::flowers

She has saved many fish here at Koko's!! We all love her dearly!! :heart

Such great news that Lucy is doing better! I've been keeping up with your thread. She's a trooper - and so are you! :hug

:goodluck

Debbie

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WARNING!

GRAPHIC IMAGE FOLLOWS!

NOT FOR THE SQUEAMISH

Lucy's mouth as of just minutes ago:

lucy-mouth02.jpg

lucy-mouth01.jpg

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That's an amazing shot roc. It looks very sore and not healing there :( .

Was that out of water? I am presuming. Can you still se ethose little white spots that I was thinking viral or have they gone now?

In this pic, it looks very bacterial...

Has the melafix had any effect at all on the healing of the pink/red area?

If not and we'd need a few days to be sure, maybe we should think about trying another antibiotic :hide: I am just thinking if she cannot manage this with the melafix perhaps a different antibiotic might be worth trying. Poor honey. I need to re-read the whole thread...

edit: Well, it seems you have tried erythromycin and tetracyline- right? The ones left that might work are either the sulfa drugs or Maracyn 2. Sulfonamides are often prescribed for ulcer type diseases, cysts that release pus, Maracyn 2 more for columnaris type infections. Maracyn Plus is another sulfa one. Not Maracyn TC which you have used (tetracycline). Basically if an antibiotic is going to work you will see healing within the first 3 days. That did not happen with either of those you tried, so we can eliminate those- I hate shotgun antibiotics but if that's all the options we have left here ...the other option is to try an antibiotic dip or topical treatment (as oppose the disinfectant PP type of application). Tricide -neo is a possible choice, a neosporin based dip that is supposed to work very well on mouth rot like this. Or Debride DebrideOintmenttopical.jpg These two are often recommended together, the dip and then the ointment...

I realy didn't realise the pink area was so large or severe till now. I'll wait for your reply to decide the next step and will keep checking back..

Edited by Trinket

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She's only been on the Melafix for a few days, but it doesn't seem to be helping. The redness is spreading.

She was only on tetracycline for a few days, she didn't get a full course of it. I bought the sulfa, but haven't used it yet. The local stores are still out of erythromycin, but I could probably get some another fish store I found (the place where I got the PP seemed to have a good stock of meds)... rather, I could probably get those other meds there. The erythro seemed to hold the nasty in place when I was using it, but it didn't seem to be making it better.

So should I start treating with the sulfa I have on hand, or should I go searching for the new meds you listed? Tricide-neo or Debride?

--Roc

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Wow, I even went to a dedicated fish store (as opposed to a generic pet store) and they did not have either of the medications you wrote of.

What I did find, and bought just to have in my kit, "Liquid Fungus Cure" which said it was for mouth fungus (and other things) by API and also purchased "Binox" by Jungle which specifically has columnaris and "open sores" on the list of things it treats. Was also able to get more erythromycin to refill my kit.

Do you think the Binox sounds good?

From the bottle: "A broad range treatment for all tropical fish and Goldfish. Clears irritations such as fungus (columnaris), gray slime (costiasis), scratching (flavo bacteria) and open sores (furunculosis)."

--Roc

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The Binox might help. It's crystals- am trying to find what those crsytals are and maybe they are pertassium permanganate crystals which you have tried. I have to check that...

I think the TRICIDE NEO (click on medications and doses in the left side panel and scroll down to the last entry: Tricide Neo Dip is amazing ) would be your best bet. It contains neosporin (a very powerful broad spec antibiotic) and a potentiator which serves as an injector to give maximum absorbtion power to the neosporin.

Hard to get locally though I imagine.

I very much doubt the tetracycline will work again. If you stop antibiotic courses midway they have a nasty way of sort of vacinnating the bacteria and so the next time its not effcetive.

IMO, The liquid fungus cure is not very effcetive for something quite severe like this on a big fish like Lucy.

Perhaps try the Binox for now and order the Tricide Neo ? which I think in the end will have the best permanent results. Its recommended by Doc Johnson as the best cure for mouth rot and he is someone you can really trust. The best.

You can also get some MEDIKOI pellets at the same site- if she is still able to open her mouth wide enough. These are much the best antibiotic food for Lucy because she is a large fish like a koi. The dosage in those is far more appropriate. These are always useful to have in your first aid box, esp with pond fish.

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Trinket,

Sorry to have been silent so long, life gets that way sometimes. While I have neglected this board, I have not neglected Lucy.

And I have GOOD NEWS!

I started using the Binox (it turns the water a piss-yellow but does not create a film at the surface). After 24 hours, there was noticable improvement! The swelling was down and the redness had receeded. After 48 hours, I swear she looks halfway to normal again! The two largest holes/sores are still present but much smaller and the screaming redness has either disappeared entirely or turned to a very pale pink. I don't what's in this stuff, but I think it is doing the job!

Then again, maybe its' the Melafix. LOL I honestly don't care *what* fixes her, so long as she is getting better.

She gets one more day each of the Melafix and Binox, then I will go back to just salt and extra Stress Coat for a few days and see what happens. She is still getting 50% water changes every day and the water tests out at just about perfect (ammonia <.25).

Keep your fingers crossed!

--Roc

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That's WONDERFUL news!! :bighug I'm so happy to hear that she's doing better!! I nearly cried when I saw your pictures of her. It must have been so hard for you seeing her that way.

What a great job you've done with her! :nana:rockon:bounce:happydance:panana

Any new pics? :rolleyes:

Debbie

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Well this is wonderful news roc :exactly . I'm really happy for you and for Lucy especially. Binox is nitrofurazone. It's a pale yellow crystal and its an bactericidal antibiotic. It's an antibiotic sometimes used for columnaris. There are at least 5 strains of columnaris bacteria so looks like you've hit the jackpot here finally.

You are doing a great job. Keep us posted and go celebrate :thumbs:

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fantastic news :D . I'm so happy for you and Lucy. :D

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Lucy seems to be holding her own still. The mouth got better to a point and then seemed to settle. She is eating a lot now, and I do mean a lot, so I think that is good. I guess at this point it is up to her to get her strength back so the healing can continue instead of just holding where it is.

Continuing with the daily 50% water changes, letting her eat as much as she wants of mysis, crisps, and peas - which she can finally get. The swelling has gone down that much... she couldn't get the peas in her mouth before.

Moved her tank closer to the kitchen so we can use the python for water changes, and what a difference that makes! Whew. Shoulda thought of that sooner, lol.

--Roc

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