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Discussion Starter #1
Our juvenile emperor angel fish has what looks like popeye in one eye - one of his eyes looks bulging and cloudy. His other eye appears fine. None of the other fish in the tank are exhibiting similar symptoms.

I read that when a fish looks like it has popeye in just one eye you may be able to treat it by adding epsom salt. I read it was safe to add 1 table spoon per 5 gallons of water and add it directly to the main display tank since it supposedly can't harm anything. This is a good thing since I only have a main display tank and don't have a quarantine tank. :p I plan on adding 13 table spoons to my 55 gallon tank to account for water in the wet/dry, pre-filter, and protein skimmer.

Does anyone know anything about using epsom salt to treat popeye? I'm nervous about introducing it to the tank despite what I've read.

The juvenile emperor angel fish also appears to have developed something on its side... if I recall correctly, it started out looking slightly discolored in 1 tiny acute spot, and now it looks like a tiny open wound of some kind. Is it possible the fish could have worms of some kind? How would you recommend treating it, or would you wait and see if/how it develops?

Thank you in advance,
Mike
 

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io have heard of this treatment but have not ever used it .. but the one warning i got loud and clear from the piece i read was to be sure it does not have additives that could harm your tank... try to get 100% pure if possible....
 

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I've never tried it on a marine tank but have used it in my cichlid tank with great success on various occasions.
And yes I also added it to my main display tank directly.
Its definitely the best value for money ito medication
 

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I have used the Epsom Salt treatment in a hospital tank to treat a discus with a serious case of constipation and it worked amazingly well. But then constipation is a very different thing than popeye, not to mention a discus isn't a marine fish. I hope someone pops in here with some definitive answers and experience that can help you!
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Thanks, guys.

I was taking pictures of my tank this morning so that I could submit one for this month's contest and I managed to take a picture showing the difference between the angel's eyes pretty clearly:

popeye.jpg

I am going to go ahead and buy some Epsom salt and treat the tank. I would hate to see this fish die or become permanently disfigured. :-( Please wish us luck!
 

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I have heard that the best way to treat popeye is do nothing, unless other fish are bothering the fish. The popeye itself should go down (I had a hippo that had popeye for like a week, all better now). Moving the fish might further irritate the eye, so leave him put. Most of the time popeye is a result of some kind of injury that just needs to heal, although it can also be a warning sign of an infection or fungus. Either of the latter two will present themselves with other symptoms and should be treated accordingly if it is really something besides injury. I would personally feed with garlic pellets or soak your food in liquid garlic. Maybe vitamin-enriched food would be a good way to go too...
 

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Discussion Starter #9
keep us posted...... poor fishy :(
I wish you all the luck I have to offer. What a beautiful fish, I hope he makes a FULL recovery.
Thanks, guys. I hope so, too.

I have heard that the best way to treat popeye is do nothing, unless other fish are bothering the fish. The popeye itself should go down (I had a hippo that had popeye for like a week, all better now). Moving the fish might further irritate the eye, so leave him put. Most of the time popeye is a result of some kind of injury that just needs to heal, although it can also be a warning sign of an infection or fungus. Either of the latter two will present themselves with other symptoms and should be treated accordingly if it is really something besides injury. I would personally feed with garlic pellets or soak your food in liquid garlic. Maybe vitamin-enriched food would be a good way to go too...
Other fish seem to be leaving the angel alone, Jeff. That would be great if it's just a matter of time. Hopefully between time and the Epsom salt it will just go away. I don't see anything wrong with any of our other fish, so I'm hoping that's an indication that it isn't anything fungal. Thanks for the tip about the garlic. I've been adding a few drops of Garlic Xtreme to their food.
 

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Not to sound like a broken record.... but I agree with Wake. Mike, I would not do anything special at all. Just let it ride. Large angels (meaning the Genus, not the size) are very prone to issues around the eyes, including swelling and cloudiness. Provided the tank conditions are good, they generally just go away on their own without treatments. Recall the issue with my Majestic Angelfish earlier this year?

On a side note, water parameters can often be blamed for eye issues. Check the pH, alkalinity, and calcium levels. I is possible that your pH is bouncing around a bit, or has dipped below 8.0.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Thanks, Mark. If the issue were related to water quality, wouldn't it affect both eyes, or not necessarily?

I just checked the parameters using an API 5 in 1 test strip. I know it's not the best, but it's what I have here at the moment since the chemicals in our test kit expired. Our PH looks good. The GH and KH are on the high end of the little colored chart on the bottle. It could be because I've been using too much SeaChem Marine Buffer. I had been adding a tablespoon each time I do a weekly 5 gallon water change. Reading the bottle again now, it looks like it recommends using less. Do you know the ideal GH and KH readings for a FO tank?

I'll just wait it out and try to keep the water parameters the best I can. I had already added the Epsom salt, though. Do you think that may have helped or are you not in favor of that treatment?
 

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I've never used Epsom salt, but I would not be concerned personally.

All saltwater aquariums, be it fish only or reef, need to be monitored for alkalinity and calcium. Adjustments should be made to keep them within the correct range. Calcium is targeted at 440 to 460ppm and alkalinity at 12 DKH. A 2 part additive is typical, with one part buffering for calcium to boost calcium carbonates, and the other part adding secondary buffers to maintain bicarbonate buffering ions and other minor buffers, such as borate. I personally use Kent Marine Super Buffer DKH for my buffer and Kent Marine liquid calcium chloride for my calcium supplement. Wake uses the 2 part Bionic product. Both are excellent. Weekly testing and adjusting will allow you to find a trend that works for your tank.

I suggest using a target point to tell you when to buffer. If alkalinity reaches 8 DKH then add the buffer. If calcium reaches 400ppm then add the Calcium Chloride supplement. If alkalinity drops but calcium remains high, then please check in with me or Wake or another appropriate member before taking any actions at all. Hopefully this never happens.

By the way Mike, there is a section on TFK where members can submit articles. One member in particular here that I am very fond of wrote a nice article on alkalinity and calcium testing and adjusting. You might want to check it out! :)
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Thanks for explaining it, Mark. I am going to give that article a read.

I don't know if it was just a matter of time or if the Epsom salt helped, but I am happy to report that it looks like the angel fish's popeye cleared up! :)
 

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good to hear about your fish.

i to dont like to add anything if possible and honestly ive never heard about epsoms for pop eye until now.

i would just like to add for who is following along... wouldnt the epsoms spike the magnesium and un-balance your cal and alk? that seems logical to me?
 
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