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Dr. B.
Dr. B., Board Certified Veterinarian
Category: Vet
Satisfied Customers: 21437
Experience:  General practice veterinary surgeon with extensive experience in a wide range of species.
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My Betta fish is suffering the abdominal distension for

Resolved Question:

Hi my Betta fish is suffering the abdominal distension for about 3~4 days, and his right eye seems exophthalmos as well. Could you give me any suggestion for such situation, please?
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Vet
Expert:  Dr. B. replied 1 year ago.
Hello & welcome, I am Dr. B, a licensed veterinarian and I would like to help you today. I do apologize that your question was not answered before. Different experts come online at various times; I just came online, read about your situation, and wanted to help.
Based on Natto's signs, this raises serious concerns of dropsy. The abdominal distension and exophthalmos are both signs of fluid accumulation (ascites) within the body. In regards ***** ***** for this, we can see it related to bacterial or viral infection, but also kidney disease.
In regards ***** ***** we can start by using aquarium salt. For salt treatment, to aim for 0.3% salt concentration, which would be three teaspoons per gallon. To get to that 0.3% salt, I'd advise adding 1 teaspoon of salt per gallon of water to your tank 3 times, with each teaspoon being 12 hours after the last. When adding the salt, I usually pre-dissolve the salt in tank water before adding. And then do so slowly into a high water flow area of the tank. The salt will help pull the fluid from his abdomen as we are changing the osmotic flow.
As well, to rule out bacterial infections that the Melafix may not be addressing, you may need to speak to your local vet or check online to obtain a broad spectrum antibiotic (to perhaps target what he is facing but more to keep secondary opportunistic infections from pushing him over the edge). Examples of those we could use would be kanamycin, chloromycetin, chloramphenicol, or tetracycline.
Overall, Natto's signs raise real worries of dropsy and therefore his prognosis is guarded. Still, we'd want to make sure the water parameters are still good (since he is already under stress, consider potentially adjusting the salt treatment and considering a more targeted antibiotic. If we can do so, we can hopefully we can give him enough medical support to help him fight through this precarious situation.
Please take care,
Dr. B.
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