Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources

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-   -   What is THE BEST bacterial and fungal treatment products out there? (

Cornelius1208 12-12-2010 09:22 PM

What is THE BEST bacterial and fungal treatment products out there?
I've been using MelaFix and PimaFix by API, but I don't know if they're the absolute best. What is the best stuff out there I can get to treat my fish? Cost does not matter. I want the best of the best.

bettababy 12-12-2010 11:51 PM

There are a lot of criteria to cover to determine "the best". The first thing you need to know is that not all medications are safe for all fish. Just because it treats bacterial infections or fungal infections doesn't mean it will safely or effectively treat the species of fish you are keeping. Most fish have medication sensitivities of some kind. Knowing the ingredients in the meds and how each species of fish will react to those ingredients is the first big hurdle.

Medications should be determined based on the exact problem your fish are having, what species of fish are sick and any other species in the tank where the medications will go, water conditions in the tank, water temperature, and what you are able to accommodate for a treatment plan.

Another thing that helps to determine how effective a medication is, especially in the case of bacteria, is whether the infection is gram positive or gram negative, and if the medication will treat gram positive, gram negative, or both.

If you would like to post about your specific problem, list stats for your fish and tank, including water parameters for ammonia, nitrite, nitrate, pH... I will do my best to help you find a medication that will work for you. Pictures of sick fish help a lot when trying to diagnose and treat illness/disease in fish via internet.

Mikaila31 12-13-2010 12:14 AM

They are like herbal medications... I personally dislike those two. Screw up the water, make bubbles, and smell strongly. IMO good food and care are more effective then these two meds.

bettababy 12-13-2010 12:55 AM

There are a number of species of fish where those medications can be very effective, but again it depends on the actual problem, what is causing the problem, and specific species of fish. Some species of fish are totally unaffected by these meds while some have no tolerance for them at all. This is why aquatic vets have so many yrs of school before they are allowed to practice. There is no way other than formal education and experience to learn what species can handle and will respond to which medications. Most average hobbyists take huge risks when medicating their fish without some kind of professional advice.

It has taken me the better part of the past 20 yrs to know as much as I do, and there are still new medications coming out on the market every yr that I have never even heard of. For this reason, knowing the ingredients is more important than knowing the name of a medication... and knowing how each ingredient affects each species of fish is key to success.

I wish fish medications were not so readily available to the general public without a prescription. That would resolve a lot of problems.

Cornelius1208 12-13-2010 03:01 PM

Everything you're saying is making sense bettababy. I had tested my parameters in my tank and everything was fine. Two days later a twelve year old dojo loach died and then in the subsequent days that followed, my neon tetras and glowlight tetras were keeling over left and right, all with no visual symptoms that can show me a cause of death. After the second fish had died, I did a water change and removed some moss that wasn't growing very well in the first place. I tested my parameters again and they were still all fine. After a few days into the exodus, I notice one of my younger dojo loaches was experiencing some fin deterioration so I started treating with MelaFix, but to no avail. My third and final dojo loach later experienced some minor caudal fin deterioration in it's tail and I treated it with PimaFix, as it says it helps cure fin rot. Once again to no avail, my loach died the next day. I have no carbon in my filter, so the medication was not being filtered. When treating my one loach, I put it in a quarantine tank where I house a female betta (it was the only other tank I had). Days after the loach had died, my betta got mouth fungus and a fungus on it's dorsal fin, later perishing the same day it appeared. All in all, I had about 10 neons, 2 glowlights, a female betta, and 3 dojo loaches die. The neons, glowlights, and betta have scales as the dojo loaches do not. I still do not know exactly what was killing everything to this day. It seemed like a fungus, but there was no sign of any fungus on my tetras that died, only on my loaches and betta.
Which leads me to my question, what treatment should I have been using that would have saved my fish? The herbal medications I was using seemed to not help at all whatsoever. I also still have some (few, but some) fish left and I am wondering that, if anything were to happen to them, what medication should I use for them? My remaining fish species are in my signature. I would like this to never happen again.

britnyjackson 12-13-2010 03:52 PM

Clean water! : ) That's always been the best solution for me!

britnyjackson 12-13-2010 03:54 PM

Oh and Bettababy is a LIFESAVER and full of knowledge! Definitely listen to her advice. : )

Mikaila31 12-13-2010 04:50 PM


Originally Posted by bettababy (Post 533376)
I wish fish medications were not so readily available to the general public without a prescription. That would resolve a lot of problems.

SHHHHH! We don't ALL wish that. I am well aware what antibiotics you can buy for fish and such. I am totally fine with it this way. It would hit a major cord with me if I had to start getting a prescription for fish. I highly doubt I would do such a thing. That costs time, money, and verification. I would euthanize most fish before going to that length. If prescriptions were required we would lose a lot of access to the actual effective medications out there, cuz your LFS is not going to market prescription aquarium medications. It would suck for a lot of people. I do already have a script for minocycline and could probably get my erythromycin one back pretty easy if it came to that.

Cornelius1208 12-20-2010 04:02 PM

Bump please? I'd like to know what treatment is the best.

bettababy 12-20-2010 04:23 PM

Cornelius1208, I did my best to try to explain... there is no such thing as an overall "best" medication that can be determined without first knowing the specific problem and situation. Every situation is different and the only way to find the "right" way to treat any fish has to be specific to that fish. There can be a best for a given situation, but not all fish can tolerate all medications, so each treatment needs to be specific.

As an example: A gourami with a bacterial problem will need a very different medication than a goldfish with the same bacterial problem, and an oscar with the same problem would need something different from the other 2. Does that make sense? Without knowing a specific problem and situation there is no way to determine "the best". "The best" differs according to what you are treating and what species are being treated. For this reason it is always important to know every animal in a tank and how they each react to a specific medication, as that is the only way to find one that is safe for all... and this is also why quarantine is important because sometimes there is no safe way to treat a tank with a variety of fish in it because one species or another often can't handle the contents of a medication needed to combat an illness with another species.

I hope that makes more sense for you and answers your question. Plain and simple, "the best" when generalized, does not exist.

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