Q: My Betta has swollen lips, one enlarged eye (popeye?), and not eating.  I do have him in Fungus Clear right now.  What else can I do to save him??

Question submitted by Kay, Boise - Idaho

A: The best thing any of you can do to save a sick betta is to take the time to read thoroughly my betta disease page. The page lists symptoms, matches them with a disease, explains a course of action and lists medications you will need to purchase.

In deed, all your answers are already on that page. But to elaborate a bit more: Fungus clear will not do a good job because your betta does not have fungus per say. True, most of the fungus medication also have antibacterial properties so it is better than nothing, but not the most efficient way to fight popeye.

This is an ailment that comes from poor water quality. It is easy to cure with Ampicilex (by Aquatronics). However, you must first fix the cause, meaning scrutinize your water quality, the frequency of your water changes/tank cleaning, whether you are overfeeding and letting uneaten food rot in your betta's environment. Uneaten food is the number One culprit when it comes to bacterial outbreaks. Combined with not enough water changes or tank cleaning and you have the recipe for betta death (yikes).

So people: CLEAN YOUR JARS. CLEAN YOUR TANKS. DON'T OVERFEED YOUR BETTAS.

At times popeye may still happen, even though you might have done the best possible job in the world. Regardless, the first thing to do is do a water change, and add Ampicilex to the new water. Keep the betta in Ampicilex for as long as it takes to get that eye back to normal. I have had full recovery of my bettas within 2 to 7 days. If in a jar, keep doing water changes every 3 days and add new dose of medication. If in a tank, follow manufacturers instructions. If you do not use the proper medication, your betta's eye will burst open (yuk). So get your fannies to the fishstore NOW and get Ampicilex ASAP!

Good luck.