Firstly, can I say I spent a long time reading through the equally-long sticky-post on swimbladder problems, to see if there was any fresh information that I could make use of for my sick goldfish. What I would like to do is post a few photos here, to see what others might think. My old fish (he's eighteen) became sick a few weeks ago, unexpectedly. He shares a 350 litre tank with a few weatherloaches and all have been in good shape for a long time. The water level has been lowered recently to allow the fish easier access to the tank floor. First of all, he started to show a slight up-ending of the tail end while resting on the floor of the tank. A few days later, this increased until the fish was seen one morning foraging in a totally vertical position. A few days later he began to float upside down, with the vent area developing a bulge. The tank has been treated with anti-internal bacteria remedy, then (after a rest period) swimbladder treatment (currently in progress). I don't tend to have much faith in either of these, but it's all I can get, so better to do something at least. Ammonia 0, nitrites 0, nitrate currently around 20ppm, I am doing a small water-change this morning and calculating a top-up for the meds.
Thing is, I cannot work out why the vent area is so swollen. The fish is not pine-coning, by the way. He just floats head down much of the time, but despite this is still attempting to collect food and swims strongly when he does move around. I cannot decide whether the swimbladder has been compromised, or there's a digestive problem, or if it's a tumour.....however the onset was quite fast, so bacteria was my first thought.
I've given him a day or so without food and provided more veg, eg peas, some broccoli; and spaced the food offerings out, over the daytime. I use Vitalis sinking pellets, the loaches like these and the fish also eats them, so those get used once a day. I am not expecting any miracles here; I have run out of options and apart from completing the swimbladder treatment I'm just trying to keep him clean and comfortable. I see I can only upload one photo, though.