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push350z 07-31-2006 05:22 PM

Cory with swim bladder disorder
My cory can't swim anywhere in the tank without doing a barrel roll so I think he has a SBD. What is the suggested course of treatment? I heard to try and give him a slightly cooked pea as that will help with any constipation he might have. One of my danios looked like she may have been pregnant but her erratic behavior today caused me to isolate her fearing it may be dropsy. Could a bacterial infection from the danio possibly infected the cory and given him the disorder? Should I quarintine the cory? I know the SBD itself is not contagious but whatever gave it to him may, although it looks like much of SBDs are attributed to either defects or diet/constipation? Any suggestions? This is getting really frustrating and a bit disheartening, I may just take out all the fish in the tank crank up the temp for a few days to clear out anything that may still be in there and then start to slowly re-stock.

07-31-2006 06:32 PM

What are your water parameters? How deep/what kind of substrate do you have?

What do you feed/how often?

Peas first. Take a pot of water and boil it. Take it off the oven and let it cool off for a miunte.

Take about 10 peas and throw them in for a minute. Then take them out
and peel them, squeeze, just get the skin off. The fish will probably love it.

See how they look in the morning. If that doesn't work, fast for a few days and try peas again.

Also it could be other problems that looks like SBD. I would QT. the cory regardless and treat with wamer water and aquarium salt. If you are not positive of the cause I would not use meds because it can stress the fish more if you dont even know what you are treating for.

Since it was more than 1 fish, you may need to feed different foods, water quality can cause a lot of problems. Why dont you try the peas and get back to us.

push350z 07-31-2006 06:41 PM


ammonia: 0 ppm
nitritie: 0 ppm
nitrate: 10 ppm
ph: 7.4

Using PFS substrate at about 1.5-2 inches of depth.

I feed about a 1/4 of a hikari sinking tablet once a day and tropical fish flakes to the danios. I'm thinking SBD because he always spins in the exact same direction pretty predicitbly and I had a fish with SBD and exhibited the same symptoms a long time ago. I will isolate him though, the cory has all of it's color and other than spinning seems to be in good spirits. How warm would you recommend I keep the water? Right now I keep it at 79-80. What other sicknesses could exhibit these symptoms? I've read about whirling disease but from what I've been told that is a cold-water only disease, and doesnt affect tropical fish.

07-31-2006 07:03 PM

Whirling disease was my only other thaught but I believe it comonly is a trout and salmon disease.

Just keep in mind....This very well could be constipation because they exhibit the same symptoms so dont freek until you rule that out.

Scroll down this link and it gives you a little about SBD and other causes/symptoms as you asked

As far as temp, IMO 82-83. SBD is a very difficult disease to treat IMO. I have heard of a few meds that could help, one is listed on the link
Many people go and treat for every bacterial, parasitic cause and I dont think that is a good isea.

07-31-2006 07:10 PM

From what I have read about sbd, it isn't actualy a disease, it's a disorder and it is almost always fatal. I had a cory die a slow death from it, it took a month for it to die because I didnt know any better.

push350z 07-31-2006 07:40 PM

New development: went to go isolate the cory and noticed it was scavenging and swimming along the bottom fine, with 0 spinning or odd behavior. I wonder if the little guy just had a case of gas lol He's hovering around the bottom now like nothing ever happened. I will continue to observe him closely every half hour or so and check on his condition, but it look as if he's ok. Regardless all my little fish friends will be getting some peas tonight as I just went and bought a small bag of some haha

My only other thought if it wasn't SBD to begin with is the current created by my filter. I have a bowfront and a penguin 350 HOB filter and when the water comes out of the filter and hits the bowfront it can make quite a nasty downward current and an accompanying upward current and maybe when he swam through that it gave him a little twist.

07-31-2006 08:42 PM

Like I had said, dont rule out being bloated/constipated.

SBD is a condition that is caused by other things and as I said, is very hard to treat.


upward current and maybe when he swam through that it gave him a little twist
I dont know about that.

Hopefully everything will work out!!!

Zagz 07-31-2006 08:44 PM

You can also add some epsom salts if he gets bloated or constipated. To determine if it is the filter or not, turn off the filter if he starts it again and see if he does it when the filter is off.

07-31-2006 10:34 PM

Yes, Thanks Zagz, Epson salt was what I forgot. That can be used with a slight temp. rise correct?

Zagz 07-31-2006 10:58 PM

With or without temp rise it helps a lot. I use in on goldfish with no temp rise and my clawed frogs when they get constipated also no temp increases.

push350z 08-02-2006 01:09 AM

Ok my cory once again is doing his spins and I took a close look at him today and some pics I'm afraid it's not looking good :( It's weird though because he was swimming around fine for about 16 hours before he started spinning again.

Here's what looks like some fluid build up inside of him while he was laying on his side:

I took some shots of his gills because I thought they looked a little red. Ammonia and nitrite are both at 0 ppm and nitrate at 10 ppm. Did a 30% water change to help with any other potential water quality problems to see if it helps.

Anyone have any ideas?

08-02-2006 09:13 AM

he is a very pretty boy, i hope he gets better.

There seems to be some grey/blackish spots around his gills that look like velvet or infection of some sort, maybe parasites?

push350z 08-02-2006 04:15 PM

Hmmm I didn't notice those before, maybe I'll start treating him with some maracyn TC I have left over as I heard it was good for bacterial infections in the gills. Anyone know what that fluid like build up could be in the first picture? I've been looking everywhere but it seems like it could be so many different things, if I can narrow it down and treat the proper sickness obviously that would be a lot better than treating the wrong one and perhaps make him sicker. I'll go back upstairs and see if I can't snap some pics zoomed in on the gill region. I wonder if it was a bacterial infection or parastite from the store though because 2 of my cories died unexpectdly well after the cycle and they had all their color, no odd behavior, anything, I just went to bed and woke up and they were dead one night after the other. If it lasts much longer I may just euthanize him because he's already breathing really hard and I don't want to make the poor guy suffer any longer than he has to.


I ended up losing the little guy, he got stuck onto the filter again and it actually pulled off some of his skin so I euthanized him because he looked to be in a lot of pain. I have no idea what to do now, it seems anything that goes into this tank kicks off. Water quality is fine, only other thing I could think of is some sort of bacteria or parasite in the water, but my 2 danios that are left look fine, although one of them seems to be losing a little color on his stripes. I don't know what to do, it really disheartens me that I've sent all these fish to their death. My tank has now aquired the name the tank of death from my family :-/

What can I do to neutralize the tank of any parasites/bad bacteria that remain in there? I was thinking of taking my remaining two danios out and cranking up the temp and throwing a bunch of aquarium salt in there and maintaining that for a few days then do like a 90% water change. I want to avoid having to redo everything because I don't want to have to re-cycle the tank. :/

joannde 08-02-2006 11:39 PM

I'm so sorry for your loss.

I had a bunch of "issues" with my tank also. Just a bunch of unrelated deaths with no apparent cause, so I know how you feel.

I don't know if the temp and salt will kill any and all bacterias or fungus - I've only heard of that for ich, so I can't really tell you if I think its a good idea or not.

In my tank I ended up treating with Maracyn 1 and Maracyn 2. It completely killed my bio-filter so I ended up doing daily water changes and then adding Bio-Spira to basically recycle it. I'm really not sure what the right answer is :( Hopefully someone else will come along with a great idea.

Tizer 07-28-2013 08:48 PM

Hi there

I just wanted to say thanks, reading this thread helped tremendously when my peppered cory had some difficulty.

the helpful advice here has saves me a lot of panic and certainly made my fish happier and more confortable!

Miyavp 07-31-2013 03:44 AM


Originally Posted by push350z (Post 681229)
What can I do to neutralize the tank of any parasites/bad bacteria that remain in there? I was thinking of taking my remaining two danios out and cranking up the temp and throwing a bunch of aquarium salt in there and maintaining that for a few days then do like a 90% water change. I want to avoid having to redo everything because I don't want to have to re-cycle the tank. :/

I read that certian types of UV light filters can kill parasites and bad bacteria. I'm not for sure but it might be worth looking into :)

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