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FAQs on Goldfish Growths 7
(ex: issues of lumps, bumps, tumors and growths)

Related Articles: Goldfish Systems, Goldfish Disease, GoldfishGoldfish Varieties Koi/Pond Fish Disease, Livestock Treatment System Bloaty, Floaty Goldfish, Gas Bubble Disease/Emphysematosis, Pond Parasite Control with DTHPHole in the Side Disease/Furunculosis,

Related FAQs:  Lumps/Bumps/Growths 1, Growths 2, Growths 3, Growths 4, Growths 5Growths 6 & Goldfish Disease 2, Goldfish Disease 3, Goldfish Disease 4, Goldfish Disease 5, Goldfish Disease 6, Goldfish Disease 7, Goldfish Disease 8, Goldfish Disease 9, Goldfish Disease 10, Goldfish Disease 11, Goldfish Disease 12, Goldfish Disease 13, Goldfish Disease 14, Goldfish Disease 15, Goldfish Disease 16, Goldfish Disease 17, Goldfish Disease 18, Goldfish Disease 19, Goldfish Disease 20, Goldfish Disease 21, Goldfish Disease 22, Goldfish Health 23, Goldfish Disease 24, Goldfish Health 25, Goldfish Disease 26, Goldfish Disease 27, Goldfish Disease 28, Goldfish Disease 29, Goldfish Disease 30, Goldfish Disease 31, Goldfish Disease 33, Goldfish Disease 34, Goldfish Disease 35, Goldfish Health 36, Goldfish Health 37, Goldfish Health 38, Goldfish Disease 39 & Ammonia, Nitrite, Nitrate, Nitrogen Cycling, Koi/Pondfish Disease Goldfish in General, Goldfish Behavior, Goldfish Compatibility, Goldfish Systems, Goldfish FeedingBloaty, Floaty Goldfish, Goldfish Breeding/Reproduction


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Goldfish Success
What it takes to keep goldfish healthy long-term

by Robert (Bob) Fenner

Goldfish with red lumpy operculum     7/25/17
I have a 60-65 gallon aquarium with 6 comet goldfish, 1 black moor, and 2 Chinese or Siamese Plecos. I have a hang on side filter system for 85 gallon tank and a submersible pump for circulation. There are variegated
philodendrons rooting in tank. When the tank was first started 2 years ago, my daughter threw some crawdads and snails and mollusks from a creek in with the fish. The snails and mollusks were eaten and the crawdads eventually killed off each other. Saturday's are 10% water change and vacuum days.
<Good. I'd increase this to 20-25%>
Water conditioner is added with new water....sometimes distilled, other times tap.
<Likely no conditioner necessary, and is the distilled nec... Oh, I see this below>
We have hard well water.
<How hard? GH, KH?>
Ph is usually in low to mid 7s. Ammonia is always less than or equal to 0.25 ppm. One in the past I noticed a fish with red streaking of its tail fin that went away untreated.
<Ahh; then I WOULD keep using the conditioner, or store the new change water a week in advance of use>
The black moor was a Wal-Mart guilt buy that brought ich to the tank a year ago. It was treated with malachite green....something that turned water ugly almost opaque green. It cleared up fast. Now. 1 week ago, the largest goldfish had a lumpy red operculum on right side. Looked like a mass.
<I see this in your pix>
It wasn't there the day before....I remember because family was visiting and looking at fish. Oh--temp of tank is around 70 in summer and cooler in winter. By that evening the lump had spread like a thick red ring with extra slime (??) at periphery of lesion.
<Good description>
I don't have an isolation tank. I added 1 tablespoon aquarium salt to each 5 gallons and put a heater in water....max temp it gets to is 78 degrees Fahrenheit.... pulled out my charcoal and floss filters (2 of each.). The initial site looks better if not pale with darker splotches. I thought it was working but next day the red ring crossed over top of head
and to other side. The margin that advances is very red and highlights the periphery of each scale. I don't know septicemia in fish but it's the closest I can match image to. However, all fish are acting fine eating fine. No flashing, rubbing. Only the one fish has symptoms.
<Thankfully; perhaps it has a/the weaker immune system>

We had one fat bivalve that was missing it's creature the day before I noticed signs. It was only one and it hid in gravel under big decorative rock forms. Can't swear fish ate it but they eat everything. I bought some quick cure..... for what???? ....my daughter swore she saw ich and was frantic....so treated 3 days.....did 25 percent water change. The fish looks same except the ever advancing red line with snotty margins.
<Mmm; I wouldn't use the Quick Cure here... too toxic, and won't help>
The first picture is day one....I know it's a side view but it really just looked thickened. I thought is it a tumor?
<Yes; this is my assessment as well>
The second picture was the next morning. I tried to swab site and look at it under a scope, but I wasn't sure what I was looking for. I know what dog parasites and Protozoans look like but not fish. I saw little Coccidia like clusters....ovals with a circle inside. I also saw a couple budding yeast like ovals. This may be a wild goose chase though. I read many posts and went through dichotomous keys....never found the answer.
<I suspect this is a tumorous growth, and not a pathogenic condition (Sporozoan, Microsporidean...) as if the latter, most all fishes would be similarly afflicted>
Please help. I need to stop letting the kids put live edible wild caught critters in tank. I need to cut back on number of fish, but don't know where to move fish to....my husband is over more tanks. The water quality hasn't changed really. It fluctuates little. There is small amount of algae on glass but not much. Sonya
<I'll refer you here to our generic "Goldfish growths FAQs":
and the linked files of the same name above.
Not treatable.
Bob Fenner>

Fwd: Goldfish with red lumpy operculum  7/27/17
Thought I'd update.... I did 25% water change and changed filters and charcoal. The fish 24 hours later looks amazing relative to the day before.
<Great news!>
The swarming margin crossed over to other side and all that is left is little red ring. The right side - the original side - is discolored but not inflamed at all that I can tell...pale operculum and a c shaped crescent of black pigment. It truly looked like a mass and it changed so fast day to day. Thanks for your time. I've grown quite fond of my daughter's fish. I'd hate for anything to happen. I will do bigger percent water changes from now on. Thanks again!
<Incredible improvement... just by fixing the environment. Bob Fenner>

Large white growth on goldfish      5/29/17
Dear WWM Crew,
I was wondering if you could help me.
<We do our best...>
My goldfish has a very large white growth on the right hand side of his body.
<I see this... apparent carcinoma in your pic.>
It has slowly been getting larger over the last month. Recently, some of the lumps seemed to have burst and a white goo like fluid seemed to have come out. Other than this he seems happy, eating and swimming normally. He is very old, being at least 13+ years old, and has lived in the same large fish tank with a filter and lots of plants for these years. I have attached a photo for more information. I hoping you would be able to tell me what this lump is
likely to be and whether there was anything I could do to help him.
Best wishes,
<Other than your ongoing good care... steady, beneficial water quality and nutrition... No. Some folks try excising such tumors... But I would not.
Many more anecdotes re these growths here on WWM: http://www.wetwebmedia.com/GFGrowthsF7.htm and the linked FAQs files of the same title linked above. Bob Fenner>

Re: Large white growth on goldfish       5/31/17
Thank you very much for your quick reply and help! I very much appreciate it!
<You're certainly welcome Cassie. BobF>

lump on goldfish tail       5/21/17
Sent from my iPad
<Claire.... text? Image? Bob Fenner>
Goldfish With Lump on Tail       5/21/17

Hi there I'm wondering if you can help me
Please see the photo below with my fish with the white lump on his tail.
<I see this>
We have had this fish for approx 3 years and the lump appeared about 6 months ago and has got bigger over time.
The lump does not appear to be affecting him at all as he is still swimming and eating well
Do you have any idea what it could be and if there is any cure
Many thanks for your help
Kind regards
<A growth of some sort... common; genetic, viral?... environmental, likely partly a matter of nutritional issues with goldfishes. Please read here re: http://www.wetwebmedia.com/fwsubwebindex/GFgrowthsFAQs.htm
and the linked files above. Bob Fenner>

Fwd: Goldfish With Lump on Tail       5/21/17
Hi again
I don't think it's anything to do with feeding or the water as there are 2 other fish all of which we've had for 5 years and seem to be extremely healthy with no lumps or problems
Could it be a cyst?
<Mmm; yes ("a thin-walled, hollow organ or cavity containing a liquid secretion; a sac, vesicle, or bladder."); but doubtful... peruse where I've referred you. B>

Growth on tail     11/14/16
<Six megs of pix.... it's taken me fifteen min.s to download just one.... >
Hi! This is my Goldie. I have a 36 gallon tank with this one and another Goldie. The tank is well established and water parameters are consistently good.
<Need values, not subjective evaluations>
I use a drop test to check it.
<Better than strips; more accurate and precise>
I recently noticed this growth on his tail. It was first just a hard bump. After about 3 days it looked like it was going to ulcerate.
<I see this and agree>
Then the redness went away again and it got a little larger. Now he has a small red spot in front of the growth. He
is eating and acting completely normal. No flashing or clamping or any other worrying behaviors. I do partial water changes once a week. I'm thinking tumor,
<Me too>
but hoping it's something more treatable. Any ideas?
<Just good water quality, nutrition and time going by>
I attached some pictures so that you can hopefully see the growth and red spot.
<You can read re others experiences with GF, tumorous growths on WWM here:
and the linked files above in the series. Bob Fenner>

Can Goldfish Develop Tumors?         9/17/16
Hello all:
<Hey Deb>
I have a plain old "feeder" goldfish from Petco that I bought years ago so he wouldn't get eaten. His name is Q-tip and he's about 16 or 17 years old now. He's in a 5 gallon tank
<Uhh; "bonsai'ed"; dwarfed from negative feedback from metabolites, lack of oxygen...
by himself and has been for many years now. Today, I spotted what looks like a growth (kind of gray-ish/reddish) in the middle of his back.
<I see this in your pic>
It's at the base of his dorsal fin, right where it connects. I initially thought it was a piece of food or feces that stuck to him, but it's not.
Any ideas on how I can help him?
<A real environment. Needs MUCH more room especially. Please read here re:

and as much of the linked files above as it takes>
Thank you so much for your help.
<Oh, and to answer your subject line (which you could've done by following our suggestion and searching WWM ahead of writing); yes; goldfish do develop tumors; but this bump is most likely a sore from this animals confinement alone.
Bob Fenner>

Oranda with white growths on wen        1/24/16
<Hi there>
I currently have two goldfish in a planted 35 gallon tank.
My parameters are
Nitrate: my strips say 20 ppm, but my API kit says 0 ppm.
<Not likely zip; but would do what you can to keep under 20 ppm>
Nitrite: 0
Ammonia: don't know, explained below
GH: 140ppm
KH: 60ppm
PH: 7.2
<All good values>
Currently I've been testing my water with strips before I can buy a new API master kit, the kit I had before seemed defective (for example, when testing for Ammonia the water stays clear and never changes color).
<These colorimetric assay kits... their reagents do age, go bad w/ time>
I generally do a 30-40% water change every two to three days (largely because I had trouble cycling the tank, and because of some of the behavior I'll mention below), I use SeaChem prime as a water conditioner.
Both my fish are still interested in eating, but I occasionally find them gasping or, more recently, bottom sitting (obviously this behavior concerns me).
<Mmm; what are you feeding? How much, often?>
I have a filter, bubbler, sponge filter, and skimmer (wave maker) set up in this tank, so I'm not sure what's causing low oxygen levels.
<Me neither>
My Oranda is who I'm really concerned about, originally I wasn't terribly worried because she's had white spots before when her wen grew but these look different
This was her last night:
This is her this morning:
<Mmm; not much going wrong here from your pix....>

The dot next to her nasal fold and the one on her eyebrow appear a bit red.
Her normal wen growths are just a white dot which then disappears back to her normal orange.
<Yes; I see this>
What also concerned me is there was a long clump of white 'string' hanging from her wen next to her eye. (That's the best picture I could get before she bumped some of it off)
<Mucus almost assuredly>
The white doesn't appear to be anchor worm, it looks a bit fuzzy, and there's no y-shaped tail.
I can't tell what this is, or if it's fungal or bacterial. So far I have not treated my tank with anything, I've just been doing more water changes.
<Do store the water ahead of use... per the S.O.P. I've written, archived on WWM>
Thanks for taking the time to read this and I hope you can guide me in how I should go about treating this.
<I would NOT treat the fish, the water/system. Some whitish growth is very common in growing fancy goldfish wens... I would add some more bio-filtration here though. Bob Fenner>
Oranda with white growths on wen /Neale's further input         1/24/16

<<As Bob suggests, I'd not be wildly concerned, but I would point out that Goldfish "gasp" when there's a lack of oxygen in the water. Review temperature (room temperature is fine; the addition of a heater is not necessary; and avoid direct sunlight, etc., that can take water temperature above, say, 25 C/77 F). Also review water circulation as this is key to getting oxygen from the air/water interface down to where the Goldfish like to swim. Bubblers are good, or an extra filter that increases the "agitation" of the water near the surface, for example, with a spray bar.
Keep the tank relatively under-stocked when you have Goldfish, allowing something around 20 gallons for the first Goldfish, and an extra 10-15 gallons for each extra specimen. Fish will produce extra mucous when stressed by something in the water, a chemical for example, or fluctuating pH, and is not necessarily as a reaction to disease or parasitism. So, check the pH is stable ("liquid rock" is the ideal for Goldfish, and a stable pH around 7.5 to 8 is what you're looking for; if you have soft water, consider hardening it through the addition of, for example, a half-dose of the Rift Valley salt mix described elsewhere on WWM). Check the water conditioner you use neutralises tap water ammonia, copper and chloramine, not just chlorine. Would not dose the tank with medications otherwise, especially not randomly if you can't pin down the specific problem. Oh, and I'd be skeptical of any zero nitrate readings where Goldfish are being kept -- they eat far too much food for such "perfect" conditions to endure for long... 20 mg/l would be good though, and anything above 50 mg/l best avoided. Cheers, Neale.>>

Re: Calico Fantail Goldfish     1/22/16
Thank you. I will try the Epsom Salt. I don't know if it matters, but today I have noticed a second small bubble on the bottom lip and the original bubble has spread up one of the gill plates and almost completely covers it. A lot of people mentioned tumors. Do fish get those and do they spread that quickly?
<Not this quickly; no.... Think of yourself... a blister from rubbing, heat... BobF>
I will be sending two pictures as well...

Wakin issue; growth         11/9/15
<Hi there Jon>
I am hoping that you can help me diagnose the cause of a white lump on my Wakin goldfish. I have found a lot of information online, but for anything that looks similar to mine, I have seen mixed reviews as to what it might be. Since I have found so much well-informed advice on your site for many issues, I though I would try writing in.
I have my goldfish in a 440 gallon indoor pond. It not overstocked, and water quality is fine (0 ammonia, 0 nitrite, about 10 ppm nitrate). I bought two Wakin goldfish in April. One soon developed a small white bump that has gradually grown into a large lump. The lump is probably now just smaller than a marble. I didn't remove him from the pond (I think because
of the gradual onset), and nothing seems to have spread to my other fish.
I have just recently notice a very small spot on the other Wakin, though, and I am monitoring that. I can't tell if it is anything at all yet.
I am attaching pictures of the problem. My guess is that this is some kind of tumor,
and there is nothing I can do about it.
<Not practically; no>
I would appreciate your advice as to whether I should be doing anything, and whether there is a risk to my other fish.
<Not likely a risk... the etiology (study of causative mechanisms) with such apparent growths can be described as viral, bacterial.... environmental of several possibilities, Protozoal.... Some folks have tried surgeries; and from a histology course many years ago (study of tissues), one can sample, embed, section, stain and look at the growth in the hope of understanding more of what it actually is. But/and as you state; there is not much chance of "spreading"; and there are incidents of spontaneous repair. I would do nothing in this case; not remove the one fish, not treat the system with chemicals; but continue with the good care you're providing>
Thank you for any help.
<You may find a bit more in our archives on GF growths:
Bob Fenner>

Re: Wakin issue           11/10/15
Dear Bob,
<Hey Jon>
Thank you very much for you quick and thorough response. This is very helpful to me. I am relieved to confirm that I am not likely putting my other fish at risk by continuing to give this Wakin a good life. As you recommend, I will stay the course.
<Ah, yes; this is what I would do.>
Thanks again,
<Cheers, BobF>

Goldfish bloated on one side     8/5/14
Hi there,
You have a great website and all seem extremely knowledgeable, so I'm hoping you can help me with my question!
<Me too>
I have a 10 year old goldfish who I noticed was swollen on his left hand last Saturday night, which is a week and a half ago now. The scales on that side are sticking out a bit (not as bad as the pineconing photos I've seen on the internet) and the ones on his right have started to slightly lift today. Other than that he is eating a lot, pooping, alert and swimming around fine (not clamping his fins to his body).
<Good signs>

I've isolated him in my 20 litre hospital tank and have been feeding him peas and treating him with Epsom salts and antibiotic baths (5 hrs per day). The antibiotic is Baytril oral which I got from our local vet (we're
in Australia so I found getting fish specific antibiotics difficult).
From my research all I can find on fish with bloat and scales sticking out is that they have dropsy (however he doesn't have the other symptoms, yet anyway...). Is there anything else that could be causing his symptoms? Are there other treatments I could try before I have to have him euthanized?
<I would return this fish to the main system... much more stable; nothing more treatment-wise I would do. Perhaps this is a tumour, maybe gonadal development (does happen one sided at times). It will likely self-cure>
He is a character and a little fighter, so I don't want to give up on him if there's a chance he might pull through with some extra help.
I've attached a photo from last Monday, I can't get an updated one at the moment as my phone storage is full!
Thanks in advance,
<Welcome. Bob Fenner>

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