It is difficult to understand what exactly is dropsy but the easiest way to identify an arowana with dropsy is a lethargic arowana that seldom swims, with a bloated stomach and has scales that opened up from the body. Not sure what it meant by scales opening up? Look no further ...
|An arowana with scales that open up. Picture taken from this post|
As you can see from the picture, the stomach as seen from the top view, appears swollen. According to most publications, there is a build up of fluids inside the stomach. The swelling becomes obvious as seen from the top view and it looks like pineapple with scales opening up.
Here is another video of an arowana in an advanced stage.
Sometimes, the eyes might bulge out and the colour of the scales would fade off. Here is an example of an arowana suffering from dropsy with bulging eyes taken from this link. When untreated, the arowana will ultimately dies.
The precise root cause of this deadly disease is unknown. What we do know is that when water is dirty and when temperature is low, arowanas will be more prone to this disease. Feeding live food to arowanas might also be a cause but we can't be too sure.
So how do we treat it?
Unfortunately this disease isn't fully understood but there are some documented treatments that might work. The below is 1.
Disclaimer: treatment method is undertaken at your own risks. We are not responsible for any results that happen as a result of your treatment.
1. Replace cotton wool in filter
2. Filter out dirty water about 10%
3. Increase temperature to 30C
4. Add salt. I would add about 3 handful of salt. Some might use Epsom salt
5. Apply Aquamedi Multicure
6. Repeat steps 2 to 5
As seen from this page, this medication can cure the following
"Aqumedi MULTICURE treats most bacterial infections and Aqumedi ICH CURE treats parasite Ichthyophthirius.
Once again, if you suspect your arowana has dropsy, act fast. Do not delay.