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Old 02-27-2005, 05:14 PM   #1
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Hi...I have had my fw tank up for about 3 years. I have 2 silver dollars and one pleco. The tank is 29gl.
Well...I did something really stupid. I 'assumed' that the distilled water I started using a few months back had the appropriate perameters, but realized 'too' late that the ph was only a 5.5!!!!! Couldn't figure out why I was losing fish and idiot that I am, never thought to check ph...I checked EVERYTHING but...
Anyway, I have been medicating the tank because of tail/fin rot which I believe is a result of the stress of the 'acid' water making their immune system a perfect target for illness.
ffwd...the tails and fins are back...fish are looking healthy..the ONLY thing that hasn't changed on one of the silver dollars is the gills...the gills are still gone...exposing red flesh...
My question is this...will the gills regenerate as the fins and tails have?
What treatments should I use to accomplish this?
The water now tests fine, and as I said, everyone is healing.
fwiw, I have a 72gl salt water tank and have been in the 'fish' hobby for about 20 years or more...but sick fish are something I honestly almost never encounter.
Thanks for reading!

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Old 02-27-2005, 05:50 PM   #2
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Well you are far more of an expert than I (20+ years!), but I will try to throw out a few questions and ideas here.

First of all, what do you mean by "the gills are still gone"? Obviously the gills can't be entirely gone, because then the fish would not be able to breathe & would be dead. Do you mean that the flesh & skin covering over the gills is gone? Or that gill tissue is missing (and if so, how much/what percentage would you say?)

What did you use to medicate the tank? Are you still using that?

Often on these boards, when people have successfully fought off an infection and/or injury of some sort and are looking for something to help their fish heal up the remaining wounds, a combo of MelaFix and PimaFix are used. If you have no other treatments in the water currently, you could dose with these, as they are gentle and yet many find they seem to be helpful. I am assuming you have some aquarium salt in the water already.

Having done that, I would simply tell you to monitor the fish and look for signs it is suffering. If he is, and doesn't seem to be healing, then the most humane thing to do would be to put him to sleep. If he doesn't seem stressed and behaves normally, then I wouldn't worry about it. Even if the gills don't get back 100% of their function, as long as they get back enough for the fish to survive without suffering, you are fine.

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Old 02-27-2005, 07:36 PM   #3
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Thanks for replying, John Paul...I have had tanks for over 20 years, but no almost nothing about freshwater illness as I rarely have encountered it I am a maniac about water changes and keeping the filters clean/changed...imo that's the best way to ensure healthy fish...

Melafix is what I used to help with the repair...and you are correct in saying that it's the flesh COVERING the gills that is missing...quite a bit of it is missing, but only on one of the silver dollars. The other silver dollar just had the fin and tail erosion.
I should add that all the fish eat normally...the 'sickest' looking one is very frisky and other than the appearance, it seems nothing is ailing it.
I guess I am just hopeful about the flesh around the gills repairing since the tails and fins have regenerated so well.
Thanks again..hoping to hear some additional experiences
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