Figure 8 Developed Lump on the Side of Jaw

Martin6562

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Hi,

My four year old figure 8 puffer has developed a lump on the side of his jaw. He shares the tank with another F8 in a brackish tank - bought together. Nothing else has ever lived in the tank. The lump is now getting bigger although he remains alert and eating well. I have tried dosing with Melafix to no avail. Local tropical vet suggested I bring him in but thought this too drastic a measure. If any body has any ideas of what this might be and where I might go next I would be really grateful I hope every one is safe and well. Kind regards, Martin.
 

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Colin_T

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just looks like a lump. it doesn't appear to be bacterial, fungal or protozoan so probably caused form old age.
 
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Martin6562

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just looks like a lump. it doesn't appear to be bacterial, fungal or protozoan so probably caused form old age.
Hi,
Thanks for your advice. Unfortunately it has got slightly larger since the photos have been taken. I thought these guys can live up to 15 years, so fours years wasn't that old? I thought initially it might have been a piece of shell stuck in there; does seem to stretch his mouth/jaw more than normal. It doesn't seem to worry him though but I guess these guys are super tough, and, as mentioned, he feeds as voraciously as ever. Of all the fish in my tanks these guys are my favourite so I wouldn't like to lose him if there something I could do.
Kindest regards,
Martin.
 

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Colin_T

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no idea.

if it's growing rapidly, then it could be an infection.
 
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Martin6562

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Hi,
Thanks for getting back again so quickly. I haven't been able to source any antibiotics. The vet has asked me to bring him in! Can you suggest anything? I have tried Melafix but I appreciate this is not necessarily going to impact an infection of this nature, but worth a try.
Kind regards,
Martin.
 

Colin_T

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You could increase the salt level and see if that helps. Salt kills a lot of bacteria, fungus and protozoans. Keep the salinity high for a couple of weeks and see if it improves.
 
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Martin6562

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Hi,
Thank for this. I might give that a go. It's currently 0.006, measured with a refractometer. What do you suggest I can safely increase this to?
Kind regards,
Martin.
 

Colin_T

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I would go half strength sea water for 2 weeks and see what happens.
 
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Martin6562

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Hi,

OK. I will need to increase this slowly though? Doubling the current salinity would be too great a shock? Huge thanks for getting back so quickly.
Kind regards,
Martin.
 

Colin_T

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go 1/4 strength sea water if you are concerned. If there's no improvement after 2 weeks at 1/4 strength, then up it to 1/2 strength sea water
 

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Martin6562,

You are already past 1/4 full marine conditions at a SG of 1.007 (Natural seawater is 1.025/1.026 SG). Going up to 1.012-1.013 isn’t going to do much if the lump is indeed caused by a bacterial infection, which we aren’t even sure about. If the lump was caused by a bacterial infection, it can clearly tolerate a good amount of salt (1.007 would kill nearly all of common freshwater aquarium pathogens). Adding a more little salt to an already salt tolerate microorganism seems unlikely to fix anything.

Lumps can be caused numerous sources including dermal abrasions, tumors, pathogens, or any number of ailments. I would be very observant to any other behavioral or physical changes to better asses what you may be trying to treat.

Figure 8 puffers do have teeth that grow, albeit slowly, sometimes teeth can protrude oddly. Have you ever fed him hard shelled foods?
 
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Martin6562

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Dear ChefAlex,

Many thanks for this. I am aware of water SG values, hence my concern. As you will know F8 naturally live in brackish water and whilst they can live in non-brackish conditions they thrive and live longer in the former. I regularly feed my F8 a range of shell foods including snails from a colony I grow for them, whole shrimps in their shells, crushed mussels in their shells etc. He does seem perfectly happy and has definitely not lost his appetite. What would the normal protocol for a lump of this nature? I'm pretty sure bagging him up and taking him to the local tropical vet is not the way forward.
Kindest regards,
Martin.
 
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Martin6562

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go 1/4 strength sea water if you are concerned. If there's no improvement after 2 weeks at 1/4 strength, then up it to 1/2 strength sea water
Hi Colin,
Many thanks for your reply. SG for the water, 0.06, for the last couple of days, is already at 1/4 strength sea water. I am bit concerned about doubling this over night and the impact this will have on the fish.
Kind regards,
Martin.
 

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