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Exotics vet performs intricate surgery on goldfish
Eric (not pictured) is a long oranda goldfish, a breed that has a bubble-type hood on its head called a wen.

Thirty-minute surgery carried out to remove tumour on jaw 

An exotics vet based in Swindon has performed intricate surgery to remove a tumour from a goldfish’s jaw.

Six-year-old fish Eric (not pictured) was taken to the Great Western Exotics practice by his devoted owner Katja Serrer-Fort.

Dr Tariq Abou-Zahr anaesthetised Eric and performed the painstaking 30-minute surgery.

He explained: “We put a tube into the fish’s mouth to deliver oxygenated water and anaesthetic over the fish’s gills to keep it asleep.

“Clearly, a very small creature like this won’t have a lot of blood in its system so we had to keep the blood loss to an absolute minimum. We used electronic forceps to control the fish’s blood loss during the operation. We were very pleased with the results of the procedure.”

Eric is a long oranda goldfish, a breed that has a bubble-type hood on its head called a wen. In Eric’s case, the wen had grown over his eyes blocking his sight. During the surgery to remove his tumour, Dr Abou-Zahr also trimmed back the wen to help Eric to see again.

Dr Abou-Zahr said it was a very unusual case. He has operated on only three or four goldfish in the course of his career.

Eric was able to return home as soon as the anaesthetic had worn off. The tumour was sent to pathology, which confirmed the it was non-malignant.

Commenting after the surgery, Katja said: “I know people might think this is a lot of trouble to go to for a goldfish. But I don’t see it that way. If you had a dog or a cat then they would be part of your family. Well, it’s the same with Eric.

“We’ve had him for six years. He’s part of our family and I wanted to do everything I could to keep him alive and help his quality of life.”

Image by Lawrencekhoo/Wikimedia Commons/CC BY-SA 4.0
 

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Stephen Fry lends voice to frog conservation film

News Story 1
 Comedian and author Stephen Fry has lent his voice to a new animation that hopes to raise awareness of deadly ranavirus, which is threatening the UK’s frogs.

Research by ZSL, who created the short film, suggests that at least 20 per cent of ranavirus cases over the past three decades, could be attributed to human introductions. This includes pond owners introducing fish, frog spawn and plants from other environments.

Amphibian disease expert Dr Stephen Price said: “People can help stop the spread by avoiding moving potentially infected material such as spawn, tadpoles, pond water and plants into their own pond. Disinfecting footwear or pond nets before using them elsewhere will also help.” 

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Scotland to fund OV training

The Scottish Government has revealed it will fund training for new Official Veterinarians (OVs), covering the Essential Skills, Statutory Surveillance and TB Testing.

Funding will also be provided for the revalidation of Essential Skills, as well as TB Testing for existing OVs. This is the second round of financial support from the Scottish Government for OVs.

BVA president Simon Doherty said he is “delighted” with the announcement.

“Official Veterinarians’ work in safeguarding animal health and welfare and ensuring food safety is invaluable,” he added. “This announcement has come at a crucial time, with Brexit and an uncertain future ahead, the role of OVs will be more important than ever in enabling the UK’s trade in animal products.