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[APD] Praziquantel (Droncit): For Bait That Have Flukes and/or Worms
Since the APD is a little slow right now, I thought I'd add a little bait information
(Sorry, Ricky :-).
I've recently suspected that my fish in my planted tank may have some sort of flukes.
Their flashing has increased dramatically over the past few months, to the point where
some will continually do so in rapid fashion (6 or 7 times in a row). I'm planning on
treating with Praziquantel. Until recently, this med has required a prescription from a
vet. Now, for ornamental fish only (not dogs, cats or humans), it can be obtained without
a prescription. The only problem is that it's very expensive and currently only comes in
quantities that will treat a pond (~$100.00 for 50 gms). I've been told that in 3 - 4
months, a smaller size will be available (~$35.00 for 10 gms). Hopefully, in time, "Prazi"
might even be available in smaller sizes and at less expense.
Here's a place that sell Prazi:
To find others, perform a search for "PraziPond"
Here's some more info:
Using Praziquantel for Fluke infestations - By Dr. Erik Johnson
Praziquantel - (branded Droncit)
What it is: Praziquantel is a bitter tasting powder which shows
good absorption directly from the treated water, and then
admirable clearance of various surface and internal flukes
(trematodes) and internal worms in fish.
What it's good at: Because it's gentle, Praziquantel is, and
always has been, the "treatment of choice" for Flukes
(trematodes) in fish. Praziquantel does not require water
changes, praziquantel is harmless to fish of *all* species
including Discus, Koi and goldfish fry, and is non toxic to
plants, and; (unlike Formalin), praziquantel has no negative
Background: Praziquantel has been known to the hobby for many
years. The drug is simply put in the water and within just a
few hours the infected fish shed the adult parasites from their
intestines. Long tapeworms are sometimes found on the bottom of the treatment tank. It was
determined also that the
Praziquantel was effective at killing and stopping Fluke
(monogenetic trematode) infections. Repeat dosing is usually
recommended but this concept should be verified. It is entirely
conceivable that the flukes can be eradicated with only one
treatment. Minimum treatment levels also should be reviewed and
Praziquantel was traditionally available in the form of branded
Droncit tablets, for oral administration in dogs and cats. The
average retail (vet) price was something on the order of four
dollars per tablet which only contained thirty four milligrams.
Considering the proper dosing of praziquantel, the cost of
treating a thousand gallons of water would normally be $908.23
Even with Biltricide, the cost of praziquantel is daunting.
Lately, the drug has become available such that it can be
deployed for about $20 per thousand gallons to be treated.
The recommended dose of Praziquantel is 2 milligrams per liter
of water. This means that in 100 gallons of pond water you
would need about seven hundred milli-grams. In a thousand
gallons you would need about seven grams of Praziquantel.
The drug is simply stirred vigorously into a liter of clean
water and, when mostly dissolved, the white colored suspension
is deposited into a high-flow area of the pond. If the fish
ingest some of the medicine as it settles out, it's not a
problem. Discontinue carbon and UV during treatment to avoid
inactivation of the Praziquantel. You do not need to bypass the
filter nor worry about oxygen levels during treatment. The most
successful treatments are deployed in cleaner ponds, so any
excess leaf litter or debris should be removed. Clearance of
the flukes can be determined by microscopy or the overall
improvement of signs of flashing and scratching. On occasion,
segmnents or ribbons of worms may be passed in the fish stools
and are generally of no concern to human health. No sifde
effects as far as fish behavior or health have been reported or
If you're treating a Fluke infestation, traditional wisdom
suggests a single repeat treatment in four to five days after
the first treatment to kill emerging larvae which may have been
shielded from treatment by the mother-fluke or the egg.
Pros: The advantages are that Praziquantel is entirely benign
to plants, fish and filter while clearing the Flukes and
intestinal worms out rapidly and completely, even with fry.
Now, it can be considered that praziquantel is the least-
expensive specific aquacultural Fluke treatment for ornamental
ponds. When you consider that it requires only one or two doses
and does NOT require water changes, nor plant removal, nor
increased water agitation, this remedy is even superior to
the "once king" Fluke Tab which contained a potentially
damaging organophosphate and has enjoyed, at best, spotty
availability during the summer.
Cons: Still not cost effective for lakes and natural ponds.
Non specific Fluke remedies such as Formalin or Potassium
permanganate are not risk free.
Praziquantel is expected to be commercially available early in
the Spring of 2003.
Precautions: Do not use on food fish or fish intended to be
used as food. Keep out of rach of children. Do not take
internally except by or on the order of your physician.
HOW THIS MEDICATION WORKS
Praziquantel acts by inciting damage to the parasite's skin internally such that the
parasite disintegrates and is removed by the host's immune system. Dead worms are not
passed by the host.
In spite of the above, many Discus keepers have a treatment schedule like this one below,
or close to it:
...for Discus, I use 1/4 level tsp per 20 gallons every 3 days for 21 total days. I leave
the meds 48 hours, do a 50% WC, then another after 24 hours, and redose. Keep up same
schedule for the full 21 days and you should get a fluke free environment.
Much less is needed to treat for tapeworms. There, same amount once a week is needed,
and leave in water for at least 48 hours before a WC. Treat twice.
Hope this helps someone.
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