discus raw wound on face

Discussion in 'Discus' started by quinton, Jun 9, 2015.

  1. quinton
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    quinton Green fingers

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    Hi All

    I have just quarantined 1 of my male discus, he is about 17cm big,
    he recently had what looked like a small white spot on his face, after a day it looked like a pimple had burst,i did not pay too much attention to it, he was eating normal, today I get home and it looks like a huge gash on the face, a raw wound which looks like its spread, he is keeping away from the others and even keeping away from the female he breeds with, so I just quarantined him, raised the quarantine tank temp too 32deg, I also raised the main tank from 28.5deg( due to winter) to 31 deg,I would appreciate if anyone is familiar with this, and what meds can I use, I have not treated yet, Im hoping I can save this guy,
     
  2. Joshua Tree
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    Joshua Tree Valued Contributor

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    @Dirk B - Is probably your best bet. Can you get a pic? Does it look like there is anything protruding from the wound
     
  3. quinton
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    quinton Green fingers

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    i can upload a pic later today when I get home, its like a whitish flesh wound on the face
     
  4. pHish_man
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    pHish_man Algae harvester

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    @quinton are you the same Quakes on the other forum?

    Please outline EXACTLY how you quarantined this fish. How long have you had him for and if he was with other fish, for how long was he with them.

    Hopefully Dirk will step in here soon, im hoping this is not a bacterial infection. If it is, then I think increasing the temp will just speed up the bacteria multiplying and this is not what you want, but rather lowering the temp. Hopefully Dirk can answer here, but in the meantime please tell me more of what and how this fish has been treated over the last 2 weeks.

    Hope to help.

    Andrew
     
  5. Deadpool
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    Deadpool Algae destroyer Staff Member

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    Hole in the head disease?
     
  6. PsyXe
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    PsyXe Green fingers

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    It sounds like either HITH or a bacterial infection. I recently had trouble with a bacterial infection that (in Rams) also produced that "hole in the head" look. I had a discus that contracted it but the only symptoms in the discus were popeye, darkening and loss of appetite. It cleared up after I isolated and dosed him with a mix of stuff including Metro (which is also what you want for flagellates which cause HITH) but it would probably be best to figure out what's causing the problem before doing anything, as I think temperatures should probably be raised if it's HITH but lowered if it's bacterial. You should probably wait for an expert first, but if you're desperate to try something I'd say Metro would be your best bet.
     
  7. PsyXe
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    PsyXe Green fingers

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    Is there stuff that looks like cotton wool in the raw wound? If so, I'd guess bacterial (in which case lower the temperature instead of raising it)
     
  8. Joshua Tree
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    Joshua Tree Valued Contributor

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    Hith is what I was worried about...
     
  9. quinton
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    quinton Green fingers

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    @phish man, the problem showed up 3 days ago. he had a white pimple on the face, then a day later it looked like the pimple burst, yesterday it looked like a raw open wound, like what @ psxye said, looks like cotton wool on the raw wound, so I took him out of the main tank( he was with 19 other discuss) I dripped him and then put him in a 70litre quarantine tank, the water is clean aged water, I have an a powerhead filter to pump in enough air, and the heater set at 32deg, I did not add anything to the water
     
  10. quinton
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    quinton Green fingers

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    what is surprising is this guy has not been sick before, we did not add any new fish to the tank recently and I have kept up my water changes as normal, (I normally change 500litre water every week)
     
  11. pHish_man
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    pHish_man Algae harvester

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    When you say recently, how long ago? For how long have these 20 fish been in the same tank?

    And what size is this main tank??
     
  12. quinton
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    quinton Green fingers

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    this fish was taken off yesterday, the last batch off 5 discus were put in about 3 months ago, the fish before that were in there for a year or so , they all doing well, the tank is 1000litres and about 2 meters long
     
  13. pHish_man
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    pHish_man Algae harvester

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    Quinton, a photo would really help if you can.

    You say the fish was eating normally.....what are you feeding? And excuse the question, but what colour poop was this fish excreting and what colour is the faeces of the other fishes that are in the main tank.

    Then a side question, what filtration are you running on this tank, as I personally think a 500litre water change per week is too excessive for adult discus. With effective filtration it would be healthier to do more regular but smaller water changes.
     
  14. quinton
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    quinton Green fingers

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    thanks @pHish_man for reply, I will upload a pic as soon as I get home, although im not too sure if the poop colour changed from a kind of redish, I will confirm later, the tank runs on a 350litre sump system, we have a pump that is capable of pumping 6000litres of water per hour if im not mistaken, we also have a powerhead in tank for extra 02, I normally feed once a day, some days its blood worms, some days its tetra bits, that is the only foods we feed
     
  15. quinton
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    quinton Green fingers

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  16. quinton
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    quinton Green fingers

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    Sorry about the bad pic. Took it out with my phone
     
  17. charles
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    charles Noob

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    I think it is a bad case of hith that might got infected by now.
    Once it went this far it is not easy saving a fish like that.
    But Dirk will know best to help you!
     
  18. Dirk B
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    Dirk B Aquascaper

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    Hi Quinton,

    Firstly, let me say that you have been asked questions by pHishman, Joshua Tree and PsyXe, because of the symptoms that you have reported for specific reasons. The symptoms on your fish are caused by an acute infection of flagellate organisms, to the point that the whole half of the fishes face is literally falling off. He may recover, but he will need extremely good treatment if he is to be given a chance.

    So the problem is caused by the flagellate organisms causing what is called hole in the head disease. This is one of the biggest killers in discus keeping and I would estimate it to be responsible for about 90% of discus deaths. The disease can be combated to some extent by the immune system of the fish but only if it is fed correctly.

    I have written an extensive post in feeding your discus on http://www.apsa.co.za/xenforo/threads/how-to-feed-your-discus-or-other-fishes-as-well.3076/ on which there was a significant discussion about how to actually feed your discus. I do not know where you got the advice of feeding your discus with bloodworms and Tetra bits, but that is totally and utterly inadequate and is the reason for your problem. Discus need to be fed a number of times per day not only once per day. If you want to keep discus successfully you are going to have to do something about this not later, but immediately, or else all of your fishes are going to die off shortly, and I am not exaggerating.

    I would now do a treatment with metronidazole at 20 Mg / litre for the infected fish. Move the tank temp up to 30-32 C and aerate strongly because oxygen solubility is low at these high temps. On your other fishes you should do a treatment with Metronidazole of at least 10 Mg / litre. On all tanks do a 30-40% water change after three days and repeat the treatment. Metro does nothing to your filters or plants so you can use it safely. You can do a third treatment on your sick fish as well.

    Metronidazole is the active ingredient of many human medications such as Flagyl and many generics, ask your chemist, but he may not want to give it to you without a prescription from a vet.

    Then you need to get decent food. I have a good friend who breeds discus in Durban and can give you his contact details by pm. He feeds foods that he gets from me which cover the spectrum of what you need. You urgently need a discus food mix containing vegetables which is high in vitamin C.

    Finally, I would like to say that this problem does not go away after this treatment. It lurks around all the time as the parasites are not killed completely by this treatment. It is for this reason that I and pHishman have now obtained discus from Germany that are completely free of these parasites, which we keep separately from all other discus and other fishes and these fishes are far more healthy, grow larger and show much better colour. The ongoing infection with flagellates has convinced me after keeping and breeding discus since 1988 that parasite free are the only long term solution to this ongoing problem such as what you see in your poor fish. I hope he recovers, but he will need a lot of TLC.

    Kind regards,

    Dirk
     
  19. quinton
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    quinton Green fingers

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    thank you @ dirk b, I did not even realise I have been feeding incorrectly,I will read your link and correct my errors there, I will definitely start treatment today,will treat my main tank as well as the quarantined fish, Thank you all for the replies, I will update on progress.
     
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  20. pHish_man
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    pHish_man Algae harvester

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    Perhaps Dirk can advise whether one should return this fish to the group before doing the treatment.
     

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