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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Just returned home from school to find my african cichlid (p. elongatus) with a very enlarged abdomen and swimming very awkwardly. Not on his side but just a very choppy motion instead of that smooth undulating motion. He also eventually just lets himself sink to the bottom and plops down. Breathing heavy as well. He does however still have an appetite and choppily makes his way to the the top to eat when I put food in. Water parameters are normal and the many other fish in my tank are fine.

I put some anti parasitic food in there right now but none of the fish really hold onto it as I normally don't feed them for a couple days when I want to feed them medicated food so they are hungry enough to eat it even though it isn't as tastey as NLS.

My medical tank has been stagnant for the time I was at school and is therefore not functional atm.

What could this be and what should I be doing? Not bloat right? Thanks in advance!
 

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He may be overeating or have an intestinal blockage or likely both. Try fasting the entire tank for a couple days. Do a partial water change and siphon the gravel first and add Epsom salt at the rate of 1 tablespoon per five gallons. Dissolve it first and add it gradually over several hours time. (epsom salt works as a mild laxative but it will also raise the GH of the tank--not a problem as long as it is done gradually)

If you don't see any improvement after a couple of days then it may be a swim bladder issue which is caused by a number of things, not all of them treatable. But try the fast first and then we'll take it from there.

Robin
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
I haven't fed for the past 2 days and he still seems to be really struggling. I'm starting to get the feeling this is 1 of those untreatable things. I also added epsom salt to the tank slowly for the past couple of days--no improvement. I'm am starting to feel bad for this fish as it appears he is suffering a slow painful death. Is there anything else I can do to at least ease the pain?

Thanks so for your help.
 
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