Best Fish Medicine for Aquarium Diseases – Reviewed 2021

Updated on January 7, 2021 by

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It is a fact that aquarium fish just like every other living being can fall ill. Fish are prone to different types of sickness and diseases and approaching the best way of handling these diseases and illnesses goes a long way to determine the longevity of the fish.

Most pets can be treated by taking them to a veterinary clinic to have them properly examined and treated, but a fish will require examination and corresponding treatment in the aquarium tank which can be very difficult and tricky as whatever you introduce into the tank might change the water chemistry and affect other aquarium species at the same time.

In the case of fish diseases, without proper care and the right water parameters, your fish and other aquarium inhabitants might be endangered and that can even lead to potential losses which is something we must avoid at all costs.

Fish are prone to various types of diseases including; bacterial, viral, protozoan, fungal, helminth, and crustacean diseases.
  • Some of the protozoan diseases among aquarium fish include Ichthyophthiriasis (ICH),  Costiasis, Trichodiniasis, Epistylis (Red sore disease), Myxosporidians infestation.
  • Common fungal diseases include Saprolegniasis, Branchiomycosis (Gill Rot), and Ichthyophonus disease (Swinging disease).
  • Common bacteria diseases include Fin and tail rot fin diseases, Ulcer disease (Columnaris disease), Dropsy, and Eye Disease. Two viral diseases are common among the fish which are Spring viremia and Fish pox.
  • Susceptible crustacean diseases are Argulus (fish lice) infestation and Learnaea diseases, while the most common Helminth disease is the black spot disease.
Before we start diving into the fish medicines for different diseases, please carefully research each of them, as some of the products are NOT suitable for reef tanks, as they’ll damage the corals and inverts.

This article investigates the different types of diseases and covers a review of the best fish medications to aid you in making sure your fish will receive the best treatment for most potential diseases.

Best Fish Medicine for Aquarium Diseases

ImageProductRatingPrice
Best Freshwater Fish Medication
API FIN & BODY CURE
API FIN & BODY CURE

Treats: Body slime, eye cloud, fin & tail rot,
open red sores, gill disease, and hemorrhagic septicemia
For use: Freshwater only

9.7
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Fast Acting Fish Medication
API GENERAL CURE
API GENERAL CURE

Treats: Parasitic fish diseases, such as gill & skin flukes, swollen abdomen, hole-in-the-head, & wasting disease
For use: Freshwater & Saltwater

9.5
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Recovers Protective Fish Coat
API STRESS COAT
API STRESS COAT

Treats for: Fish protective coat, heals using Aloe Vera
For use: Freshwater & Saltwater
Conditioner: Removes chemicals from tap water

9.1
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Fast Ich Parasite Medication
API LIQUID SUPER ICK CURE
API LIQUID SUPER ICK CURE

Treats for: “Ich” white spot disease in fish and secondary bacterial fish infections
For use: Freshwater & Saltwater
Indication: DO NOT USE in reef aquariums

8.8
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Best Preventive Fish Medicine
Kordon Methylene Blue
Kordon Methylene Blue

Treats for: Superficial fungal infections
For use: Freshwater

8.6
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Best Medicine for Betta
Seachem ParaGuard
Seachem ParaGuard

Treats for: Ectoparasites, fungal, bacterial, viral lesions
For use: Freshwater & Saltwater

8.2
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Best Medicine to Get Rid of Snails
Seachem Cupramine Copper
Seachem Cupramine Copper

Treats for: Oodinium, Cryptocaryon, Amyloodinium, Ichthyophthirius, plus other ectoparasites
For use: Freshwater & Saltwater

8
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Best Copper Medication
Fritz Mardel Coppersafe
Fritz Mardel Coppersafe

Treats for: Ich, flukes (Gyrodactylus), anchor worms, velvet/protozoan diseases and other external parasites
For use: Freshwater & Saltwater

7.7
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Best Medicine to Recover Fish Fins
API Aquarium Pharma
API Aquarium Pharma

Treats for: Bacterial infections and repairs damaged fins, ulcers and open wounds 
For use: Freshwater OR Saltwater

7.4
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Best Medicine for Fish Parasites
Hikari Usa Prazipro
Hikari USA Prazipro

Treats for: Disease conditions caused by flukes, tapeworm, flatworm and turbellarians
For use: Freshwater & Saltwater

7.2
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Promotes Fish Recovery
API Aquarium Salt
API Aquarium Salt

Improves: Gill function
Adds: Essential electrolytes

Helps: Fish recovery
For use: Only Freshwater

7.2
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1. API FIN & BODY CURE – Overall Best Fish Medication

Best Freshwater Fish Medication
API FIN & BODY CURE Powder Medication - Overall Best Fish Medication

API FIN & BODY CURE Powder Medication

The API FIN & BODY CURE consists of 10 powder medication packets, specially formulated to remove worms and treat aquarium fish parasitic infections.

It is highly effective at combating and eliminating common organisms including but not limited to worms such as Planaria or Camallanus among many others.

It is hailed as one of the fastest and most effective treatments for dangerous aquatic parasites. It is effective at eliminating these parasites from the tank environment within a maximum of four days of administration.

This fish medicine product comes with clear dosage instructions for safe administration only for freshwater use. From successful experiences that we’ve had, it is the best fish medicine when treating diseases such as body slime, eye cloud, fin & tail rot, open red sores, gill disease, and hemorrhagic septicemia.

PROs
  • Clear usage instructions
  • Powder fish medicine for easy administration
  • Treats a multitude of fish diseases effectively within few days
  • Fast against cloudy eye
CONs
  • Water will be slightly discolored after using the medicine

2. API GENERAL CURE – Fast Acting Fish Medication

Fish Powder Medication
API GENERAL CURE Freshwater & Saltwater - Fast Acting Fish Medication

API GENERAL CURE Freshwater & Saltwater

This is a medication formulated for both freshwater and saltwater aquarium.

The API General Cure medication is aimed to cure many parasitic fungal diseases such as gill flukes, hole in the head, swollen abdomen, anchor worm, wasting disease, and fish lice.

There is a diagnostic chart behind the carton that provides guidelines for application. It is safe for the fish and other aquatic species as it does not color the tank, even though it is applied in powder form.

However, this will increase Total Dissolved Solids (TDS) concentration which might adversely affect sensitive inverts.

PROs
  • Targets and cures most parasitic fungal diseases
  • Suitable for both saltwater and freshwater aquarium
  • Easy to use
  • Comes with a diagnostic chart with application guidelines
  • Does not color aquarium water
CONs
  • Increases Total Dissolved Solids (TDS) concentration

3. API STRESS COAT – Recovers Protective Fish Coat

Water Conditioner
API STRESS COAT for Aquarium - Recovers Protective Fish Coat

API STRESS COAT for Aquarium

Just as the name suggests, the API stress Coat conditioner is used to replace the protective coating of the fish which has been damaged by certain diseases or stress.

It is formulated with Aloe Vera which is essential for reducing fish stress. It helps in tissue regeneration and replaces the natural slime secretion which is often damaged during fish fighting, handling, shipping, and many other stress related factors.

It also helps in making tap water safe by eliminating threatening toxic chemicals such as chlorine, ammonia, and chloramines which are often present in tap water in most locations around the world. This makes it most preferable to be used when adding or changing water and when adding new fish.

Technically, this medicine is often regarded as a water conditioner, as it helps to maintain the quality of the water while also repairing the coat of the fish. This medication is effective as well in treating some common protozoan and fungal diseases such as ich and fish rot.

It comes in different sizes to suit your preference regarding different tank sizes.

PROs
  • Contains Aloe Vera to reduce fish stress
  • It comes with dosing instructions
  • Removes toxic chemicals from tap water
  • It helps in recovering the fish protective coat
CONs
  • Not suitable for saltwater tanks

4. API LIQUID SUPER ICK CURE – Fast Ich Parasite Medication

Fast Ick Fish Medication
API LIQUID SUPER ICK CURE - Fast Ich Parasite Medication

API LIQUID SUPER ICK CURE

Just as the name suggests, the API Super Ick Cure is formulated to target and cure the highly contagious parasitic Ich white spot fungal disease at a very fast rate.

It is safe for both freshwater and saltwater aquarium tanks.

It also adds a slime coat to the fish where the natural slime coating has been affected by the parasite and helps to protect them from future secondary diseases.

It comes with clear dosage instructions that can be found on the packaging and label of the product.

This medication should be used at the first sight of Ich symptoms which often come as white spots, determining the fish to start scratching against surfaces.

However, it can also discolor the tank water and make it unsuitable for sensitive invertebrates, corals, and generally unsafe for a reef tank.

The discoloration can, however, be removed by adding activated carbon to the filter. Also, some scaleless fish are sensitive to this medication, and it is recommended to treat them with half of the dosage requirements.

PROs
  • Adds slime coats to the fish
  • Suitable for freshwater and saltwater
  • Comes with clear dosage instructions
  • Effective at treating Ich in a very short time
CONs
  • Discolors tank
  • Unsafe for reef tanks

5. Kordon Methylene Blue – Best Preventive Fish Medicine

Preventive Treatment
Kordon Methylene Blue - Best Preventive Fish Medicine

Kordon Methylene Blue

Specially designed in a 4-ounce or 8-ounce bottle, the Kordon Methylene blue is specially formulated to cure many fungal diseases, and it’s undoubtedly something that every fish keeper should have among the aquarium accessories.

This medicine can also be used as an alternative to the malachite green especially when dealing with fish that are sensitive to the adverse effect of the malachite green.

The Kordon Methylene Blue is safe for fish eggs and fry and should be applied to prevent them from getting exposed to fungal infections. It is also effective at treating certain protozoan diseases such as Ich, Hilodonella, and Costia.

Methylene blue is also effective at removing some toxic chemical substances such as ammonia and nitrite. It is suitable for both saltwater and freshwater aquarium tanks. At the same time, it’s also absolutely safe for invertebrates including but not limited to snails, shrimps, and crabs.

However, it is not recommended to be used in tanks with live plants, as it can destroy useful bacteria and some necessary elements which will damage and probably kill the plants in the long run. This product will discolor the water, but this can be treated with activated carbon in the filter.

The coloring can also be allowed to fade after a couple of days. It is quite effective and affordable too.

PROs
  • Effective for fungal diseases
  • Can cure some protozoan diseases
  • Comes with a friendly price pay
  • It can remove toxic water chemicals
CONs
  • Not suitable for live plants
  • Will make the water blue

6. Seachem ParaGuard – Best Medicine for Betta

Fin Rot Fish Medicine
Seachem ParaGuard - Best Medicine for Betta

Seachem ParaGuard

Seachem Paraguard is an effective aldehyde based fish medication which is formulated to treat ectoparasites and other fungal, bacterial, and viral diseases.

It has a superb combination of aldehydes, malachite green, and fish protective polymer which is even at eliminating ectoparasites and treating certain external bacteria, fungal and viral infections.

As an alternative to formalin which can alter the water chemistry such as the pH, the Seachem Paraguard can be used which contains no formaldehyde or methanol. It is suitable for both freshwater and saltwater aquarium tanks.

However, the Seachem Paraguard is not safe for invertebrates, corals, crustaceans, or elasmobranchs, hence making it unsuitable for reef tanks. It is safe for plants and shrimps though. It should also be applied whenever a new fish is introduced into the tank.

PROs
  • Effective at eliminating ectoparasites and certain fungal, bacterial, and viral infections
  • Suitable for both saltwater and freshwater tanks
  • A great alternative to formalin
  • It does not affect the water chemistry
  • Combines a blend of aldehydes, malachite green, and fish protective polymer
CONs
  • Unsuitable for reef tanks

7. Seachem Cupramine Copper – Best Medicine versus Snails

Strong Aquarium Medication
Seachem Cupramine Copper - Best Medicine versus Snails

Seachem Cupramine Copper

When a sickness gets from normal to worse, then a stronger fish medication is demanded. The Seachem Cupramine Copper is a stronger medication for severe parasitic infections.

It is very effective at eliminating even a wide variety of strong and stubborn external parasite diseases both in saltwater and freshwater aquarium tanks.
But half the recommended dosage is required for a freshwater tank.

The Seachem Cupramine Copper is a great copper choice of treatment as it is less toxic to fish than most other copper alternatives such as copper sulfate, chloride, and citrate, and will not affect the tank filtration system.

Seachem Cupramine Copper has a fully charged ion, easily removable with carbon filtration and active even at lower concentrations.

However, just as many other Seachem products, the Seachem Cupramine Copper is not safe for invertebrates, corals, crustaceans, or elasmobranchs, hence making it unsuitable for reef tanks.

PROs
  • Less toxic than other copper alternatives
  • Very effective at eliminating severe parasite diseases
  • Active even at lower concentrations
  • Comes with a dosage instruction on the package
CONs
  • Not suitable for reef tanks

8. Fritz Mardel Coppersafe – Best Copper Fish Medication

Effective Against Ich
Fritz Mardel Coppersafe - Best Copper Fish Medication

Fritz Mardel Coppersafe

The Fritz Aquatics Mardel CopperSafe Treat is a handy choice copper treatment that will not affect your filter and also not discolor your aquarium water as most copper treatments would do.

It is effective at eliminating several fungal, bacterial, and protozoan diseases including ich, flukes, anchor worms, and other external parasite diseases.

It also contains a live Nitrifying Bacteria that eliminates Ammonia and Nitrates.

Fritz Mardel CopperSafe Treat is suitable for both freshwater and saltwater aquariums and will remain active even up to a month following its administration. It should also be added when water changes occur. This will help to maintain the therapeutic level of a copper safe solution.

This copper treatment is not suitable for reef tanks and is not recommended for fish species that are sensitive to copper. However, a partial water change is an easy way to remove the Fritz Aquatic Mardel Copper Safe Treats from the tank.

PROs
  • Can treat a larger tank up to 376 gallons
  • Fortified with live nitrifying bacteria to remove ammonia and nitrates
  • Suitable for saltwater and freshwater
  • Will not discolor the water
  • Will not affect the filtration system
CONs
  • Not suitable for reef tanks
  • Not recommended for fish that are sensitive to copper

9. API Aquarium Pharma – Best Medicine to Recover Fish Fins

Rapid Fish Recovery
API Melafix Pharmaceuticals - Best Medicine to Recover Fish Fins

API Melafix Pharmaceuticals

The API Melafix Bacterial Infection Remedy is specifically formulated for freshwater fish tanks and equipped with natural tea extract that is very effective at treating bacterial infections.

It also helps to rapidly repair damaged fins and open wounds which are probably caused by fighting, aggression, diseases, or other stress-related exercises.

API Melafix Bacterial Infection Remedy is also effective at promoting regrowth of damaged tissues and treating ulcers. It should be best administered when doing water changes or when new fish are introduced to avoid potential disease outbreaks.

It does not adversely affect the biological filter, neither does it alter the water chemistry nor discolor the tank water. It is recommended to remove the activated carbon filter (if possible) before administering this medicine, as its effects can be easily canceled by the carbon filter.

For best results, it should be administered to infected fish daily for a period of 7 days. If symptoms persist, then medication administration should continue afterward. New fish should have the medication administered on daily basis for 3 days. It comes in an 8-ounce handy recipient for easy administration.

PROs
  • Does not alter water chemistry
  • Repairs damaged tissues and fins and promotes regrowth
  • Treats bacterial diseases and ulcer
  • Serves as a pre-treatment to avoid a disease outbreak
  • Formulated from 100% natural source.
CONs
  • Can be easily canceled by carbon filters

10. Hikari USA Prazipro – Best Medicine for Fish Parasites

Great Pre-Treatment
Hikari USA Prazipro for Aquarium - Best Medicine for Fish Parasites

Hikari USA Prazipro for Aquarium

The Hikari Pazipro for Aquarium is formulated with Oxybispropanol and less than 5% Praziquantel in its composition which is highly effective at treating diseases caused by tapeworms, flatworms, and flukes.

As a pre-treatment for fish, the Hikari Pazipro is also applied when new fish are introduced or water changes are carried out.

However, this product may discolor the water and it’s not suitable for sensitive fish or corals, therefore it should never be used in reef tanks. It comes with clear dosage instructions for proper administration, but if distress is noticed among the fish when administered, consider reducing the recommended dosage to about a half and closely monitor the activity in the tank.

It is highly effective and comes in a 4 ounce package that bears a friendly price tag.

PROs
  • Effective for treatment of diseases caused by tapeworms, flatworms, and flukes
  • Comes with a friendly price tag
  • Can be used as a pre-treatment when new fish are introduced
  • Comes with dosage instruction guidelines
CONs
  • The prescribed dosage might cause fish distress
  • May discolor the water

11. API Aquarium Salt – Promotes Quick Fish Recovery

Aquarium Water Enhancer
API Aquarium Salt - Promotes Quick Fish Recovery

API Aquarium Salt

The API aquarium salt is not a medicine per se, but it’s a great addition to freshwater tanks, enabling the fish to breathe better and easier, with their gill function improved.

It is a useful ingredient, especially for Goldfish tanks as they are susceptbile to multiple diseases given the water parameters, are not within the proper range.

The API Aquarium Salt is, however, to be used only in freshwater environments. Coming with a friendly price tag, it’s also a good aid for recovering fish from different diseases. It will assure a better and faster recovery, so the fish will happily swim again in no time.

To conclude

Giving your aquatic inhabitants the best medication goes a long way in keeping them healthy, but also to prevent any potential diseases when, for instance, new fish are introduced. Without the proper medication and its corresponding administration, your fish could be endangered.

This requires that not only is the best fish medication important, but also proper dosage administration is just as important. As a matter of fact, if the best medication is administered with the wrong dosage, it could end up doing more harm than good to your beloved fish.

From our reviews, the API FIN & BODY CURE is the best fish medication that you should have in your fish first aid kit. This is because it is suitable for most freshwater fish illnesses. It is effective at eliminating worms and toxic parasites. It can be simply mixed with freshwater for easy administration. Also, this medication comes with a friendly price tag. For optimal performance, it is recommended to administer 100mg to a 10-gallon tank. Give your fish the best medication and watch them live to the fullest.