Ichthyosporidium is as the name suggests a fungus. It will as most other funguses only infect already weakened fish and will normally not be able to infect healthy fish in good condition. Making sure to keep good water quality, with the right water parameters for your fish and giving them a good varied diet will therefore prevent this disease from ever being a problem. Disease prevention is always preferable to disease treatment and this is true for Ichthyosporidium as well.
The Ichthyosporidium fungi attacks the fish internally and can because of this be harder to treat than many other fungus diseases. You can find more info about treating the disease later on in this article, but I want to start by looking at the symptoms of Ichthyosporidium. The disease does as earlier mention attack the fish internally and primarily attacks the liver and kidneys even though it will eventually engulf the entire body of the fish. This can cause a wide variety of symptoms in different fish but the symptoms usually includes the fish becoming slower, their bellies sinking in, the fish loosing balance and eventually the production of cysts and soars on the body. If the fish develops cysts or soars, it is very difficult to save it.
Ichthyosporidium is as earlier mentioned hard to treat as it is internal and the available treatments can cause damages to the fish and potentially even kill a fish that has already been weakened by Ichthyosporidium. These treatments include adding Chloromycetin or Phenoxethol to the food given the infected fish. Add about 1% of these substances to the food. 1% equals mixing one 250 mg pill with 25g food. The medicine can be mixed in most types of food. It is good to skip a feeding or two before starting to feed the medicated food to the fish to make sure that the sick fish eats the food. There is no guarantee that the treatment will work.
Diagnosed fish should be removed from the community aquarium as soon as possible to prevent the disease from spreading since it can be hard to cure. Some recommend destroying any fish diagnosed with this disease immediately but that can be a bit drastic as it might be possible to save your beloved fish. I do however recommend killing fish displaying cysts and soars as it is unlikely that those will recover regardless of treatment and you should always kill infected fish rather than letting the disease spread if you are unable to move sick fish to a treatment tank.
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