Out of treatment ideas for sick oscar

  • SadOscar
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SadOscar created the topic: Out of treatment ideas for sick oscar

I have an Oscar with an ongoing eye infection with an unusual combination of other symptoms. (Pictures: drive.google.com/open?id=0B-Wo3TjuiAfeNDNXQl9va3dialU ) I have tried a number of medications as well as increased water changes, but have not been able to beat the infection.
Background/tank info: The tank is 300 gallons with a large sump. In addition to the Oscar I have two chocolate cichlids, two parrots, two severums and two medium silver dollars. Before my oscar got sick I did a 50% water change every week (I have increased water changes lately as part of treatment). I test the water every week before changes and maximum nitrates were 30-40 ppm, Ammonia and nitrite have been zero since the tank was cycled two years ago. pH is 8.2 (City water has high carbonates so it is nearly impossible to adjust the pH. The Oscar was raised in this water so, while the pH is unideal, stable high pH seems better than fluctuating lower pH). Tank temperature is kept at 78 F. I got the Oscar from LFS when he was about 3” a little over two years ago, he is about 10” now. He prefers to eat Hikari cichlid gold pellets (he sulked for two weeks when I ran out of that kind and tried to feed him hikari cichlid staple). I supplement the pellets with bloodworms, mealworms, crickets etc.
Disease progression and attempted treatment: The first sign of trouble occurred in December. The Oscar had a few, small, white spots on his body and fins. The spots looked like ich, but were slightly larger than the ich I have dealt with previously. I attempted my previously successful treatment for ich (increased water changes, increased the tank temperature and added salt). No other fish showed signs of ich. The spots went away, leaving small (~1mm) pits. However, a small cloudy spot started on the oscar’s eye and he started to develop what looked like hole in the head.
At this time, I tried dipping him in methylene blue and API Fungus Cure (Victoria Green B and Acriflavine)(the eye spots looked fungal to me). I also tried to feed him pellets medicated with API General Cure (combination of Metronidazole and Praziquantel), but he was not a fan of the taste. It was about this time that he stopped eating. To treat him with General Cure and Fungus Cure in the water and avoid catching him I moved him to a quarantine tank. I did water changes every other day as recommended on the general cure package, and I replaced the filter media in the quarantine tank daily with fresh media from the main tank sump. This was not enough to keep ammonia levels below detectable levels (0.25 ppm). I returned him to the main tank and good water, the eye seemed better (maybe just wishful thinking on my part) but it quickly got worse.
Next I set up a larger quarantine tank (70 gallons) and treated with a full course of Maracyn2 (Minocycline). This didn’t seem to help. I then treated with a full course of erythromycin, but it was not effective either. Finally, I treated with a combination of Furan-2 (Nitrofurazone and 25 mg Furazolidone), kanaplex (Kanamycin Sulfate ) and metronidazole. This seemed to help a little bit, so I continued treatment for two weeks. This was a longer than recommended treatment for kanaplex, but it was the only thing that sort of worked. However, after a while the Oscar seemed to stop improving and the water quality took a turn for the worse.
After running out of treatment ideas, I moved the Oscar back to the main tank and better water quality. I have been doing water changes every couple days (nitrate ~5, ammonia = 0, nitrite = 0). His eyes and hole in the head have slowly gotten worse.
Throughout treatment in the 70 gallon quarantine tank I did my best to balance water changes and water quality with removing meds from the water. The filter did not stand up to the meds well at all. I regularly replaced the filter media with media from the main tank sump. I tested the water every day and ended up doing 50% water changes every other day, or every day when the test showed detectable ammonia. This was more water changes than recommended on the meds, but not really enough to keep the water clean. The Oscar refused food the whole time, and the small amounts of food I offered him were removed from the tank.
Do you have any ideas for treatment? Do you have any suggestions for how to maintain water quality in a quarantine tank with antibiotics?
I would appreciate any ideas! I really want my oscar to feel better!
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DRACO replied the topic: Out of treatment ideas for sick oscar

what test kit are you using?
the pictures show that the HITH is getting worse with blurry eyes with splintered pectoral fins.....
perhaps caused by high ammonia...
how often do clean your filter media?
how do you clean it?
you may try to test your tank water against power leak...
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SadOscar replied the topic: Out of treatment ideas for sick oscar

Thank you for the reply!

I use API freshwater test kits. It tests for ammonia + ammonium. I have read a number of places that ammonia is more toxic, but I prefer to test for the total ammonia + ammonium level to be on the safe side. I have two test kits, one relatively new. Both are well within their expiration dates, and they both give the same result. I don't have any evidence to suggest that the tests are wrong.

Assuming my test is working, the high ammonia occurred in the hospital tank, but not in the main tank.The Oscar had both the eye infection and HITH before going into the hospital tank. Filter media was rinsed well to remove any loose organic matter before using it in the hospital tank. In the main tank I use a dacron filter pad in the over flow to catch any particulates before they get to the filter. I change this two to three times per week. I do not clean out the main sump filter media. But if that was a problem it would cause high ammonia/nitrate in the water, which would show up in the water tests.

I tested for power leak and did not find anything.
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DRACO replied the topic: Out of treatment ideas for sick oscar

i am just ratled by the situation... and bit lost why the amminia at the hospital tank is very high...
have you tried to test the tap water?
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