Disease Diagnosis Chart
- Bacterial: Inactivity, loss of color, frayed fins, bloated body, cloudy eyes, open sores, abscesses, red streaks throughout body, reddening or inflammation of the skin, fins or internal organs, bulging eyes, difficulty breathing.
- Fungal (often secondary to another type of illness): Erratic swimming, darting, scratching, visible cotton-like tufts on skin, eyes, or mouth.
- Parasitic: Inactivity, loss of appetite, excess mucus or film on body, visible spots or worms, rapid breathing, scratching.
|Grayish-white film on skin, damaged fins, ulcers, yellow to gray patches on gills, tissue on head may be eaten away.||Columnaris - Cotton Wool Disease)||Must be treated immediately with Over The Counter (OTC) antibiotic medications. Very contagious - disinfect tank, rocks, net, etc.|
|Swelling of head, bulging eyes.||Corneybacteriosis||OTC antibiotics such as penicillin and tetracycline.|
|Swelling of abdomen, raised scales around swollen area.||Dropsy - Malawi Bloat) - may be caused by internal bacterial infection - if swelling is sudden), parasites, or cancer - if swelling is gradual).||Add 1/8 teaspoon of Epsom salt for every 5 gallons of water and monitor for two weeks. Check for signs of bacterial infection or parasites for further treatment.|
|Ragged or decaying fins.||Finrot||Check pH and correct as needed. If level is normal, use OTC antibiotic for fin or tail rot.|
|Inactivity, loss of color or appetite, weight loss, skin defects.||Fish Tuberculosis||Human strength TB medication may help in early stages. Contagious - disinfect tank, rocks, net, etc. to prevent transmission. Wash hands and surfaces well.|
|Erratic swimming, bloating or swelling in body, black patches on body or fins.||Myxobacteriosis -- rare||Medications, if any, are difficult to come by. Keep up on water maintenance to prevent it.|
|Sluggishness, lack of appetite, fin damage, reddish discoloration, bulging eyes, clamped fins.||Septicemia||Antibiotic treatment in food form is required.|
|White or gray fungus on eyes.||Cataracts||OTC medication for fungus.|
|White or gray patches resembling cotton, excess mucus.||Mouth or Body Fungus||OTC medication for fungus. Usually added to water, but may need direct application.|
|White cotton-like patches on fins, body, or mouth.||True Fungus (Saprolegnia)||OTC medication for fungus. Check for symptoms of other illnesses.|
|Small string-like worms visible on fish, or burrowed in skin.||Anchor Worm||OTC medication for parasites.|
|Bluish-white film on body, strained breathing caused by gill damage, peeling skin.||Chilodonella||Salt treatment - see below).|
|Weight loss, strained breathing.||Copepods||OTC medication for parasites, also fungal treatment for possible secondary infection on damaged gills|
|White film, reddened areas on body, abnormal swimming, scratching, folded fins.||Costia - Slime Disease)||Must be treated quickly. Raise water temperature and use OTC medication for parasites. Salt treatment may work, as well.|
|Weight loss, abnormal swimming, generally looks very ill. Will accompany or follow leech infestation.||Blood Flagellates - Sleeping Sickness) - rare||Salt treatment can be used to kill leeches, but may not cure flagellates.|
|Sluggishness, flashing, spider web lesions on skin, colour loss, reddened fins, drooping fins, fin damage.||Skin Flukes - Gyrodactylus)||OTC medication for parasites|
|Lack of appetite, weight loss, small holes or eroding pits appearing in the head.||Hole in Head Disease - Hexamita) - more common in cichlids||OTC medication for Hole in Head Disease.|
|Scratching, white salt-like spots starting on head and spreading over whole body, rapid breathing, cloudiness on eyes or fins.||Ich - Ichtyophthirius) - very common||OTC medication for Ich or Ick.|
|Scratching, small worms hanging from body.||Leech||Salt treatment or OTC medication for parasites.|
|Scratching, green to brown lice - up to ½ inch) visible on skin.||Lice||OTC treatment for parasites.|
|Erratic swimming, weight loss, loss of color.||Neon Tetra Disease - mostly affects tetras, danios, and barbs||Treatment is difficult - look for a medication that treats gram-negative bacteria or with nalidixic acid as the active ingredient.|
|Darting, scratching, small yellow to white spots dusting skin.||Oodinium||OTC treatment for parasites.|
|Cloudy appearance on skin, red patches on skin where parasite has bitten.||Trichodina -- predominately freshwater||Salt treatment.|
|Red or bloody gills, gasping for air.||Ammonia Poisoning||No treatment. Regular water testing and maintenance will prevent it.|
|Small dark spots on fins and body.||Black Spot||OTC medication for parasites. Spots - cysts) may remain after treatment.|
|Cloudy white appearance to one or both eyes.||Cloudy Eye||Check for symptoms of another illness like velvet, ich, or tuberculosis. Treat with OTC medication.|
|String of feces hanging from fish, swollen abdomen, sluggishness, disinterest in food, off-balance swimming.||Constipation||Stop feeding for 2-3 days and continue with a more varied diet including live and plant-based foods.|
|Small white spots that get larger over time possibly with black streaks.||Fish Pox||No treatment. Keep up on water maintenance and symptoms should cease after about 10-12 weeks.|
|Difficulty swimming, swimming upside-down, floating, unable to surface. Do not confuse with swim bladder disease.||Flipover||Air can be removed from swim bladder by a veterinarian. Surgery is also a possibility in larger fish. Check for signs of internal infection or parasites and treat as necessary.|
|Reddening on or under skin, sudden abnormal behavior.||Inflammation||OTC antibiotic treatment.|
|Unusally bulging of one or both eyes.||Pop-eye - Exophthalmia)||OTC medication for bacterial infections and/or parasites. Check for other symptoms of bacterial or parasitic infections.|
Fish struggles to swim, may float with head tipped down, or have difficulty surfacing, no balance, etc. May occur after eating.
|Swim Bladder Disease||Stop feeding for 3-4 days. If symptoms persist, feed the affected fish a small amount of fresh spinach or a green pea without the skin - laxatives).|
|Swelling or distention for internal tumors, external can be seen growing on skin.||Tumors||Usually incurable. Consult a veterinarian about potassium iodide treatment for thyroid tumors.|
|Sluggishness, lack of appetite, open sores with red edges, possible fin rot.||Ulcers||OTC medication for bacterial infections.|
|Scratching, small gold to white spots, loss of color, weight loss, difficulty breathing due to gill damage.||Velvet - Gold Dust Disease)||OTC medication for parasites.|
Thanks goes to to http://www.klsnet.com for letting us use this chart, it is greatly appreciatd by the ZebraPleco team and all the site members.