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The Loach Forum Archives (1)

Re: clown loach with swollen belly

Posted By: Dr. Momfish <alexp@idirect.com>
Date: Thursday, 27 May 1999, at 4:03 p.m.

I still think that this loach has dropsy.

Somehow it has developed septicemia. Even if drugs kill the infective agent that has caused the problem, the toxins released by bacteria are responsible for damage to the kidneys. When they are not functioning anymore the fish cannot balance the electrolytes inside its body. Instead, water keeps going into the fish and causes an increase in the pressure within the body and, of course, bloating. This increase in pressure also causes additional damage to the kidneys. The tissue of these organs is very delicate, and any large pressure applied to them will cause them to rupture. Once this has occured there is no hope that the fish will survive.

We cannot perform dialysis on fish in order to decrease the fluid load in their bodies, as we may do for humans. Conseque