Does Melafix and Pimafix work against fish skin flukes?

Just come across this interesting scientific paper.

I’ve to admit their findings are inconsistent with my field experience. I always make a diagnosis of trematodes even when they’ve treated with Pimafix, Melafix, or both.

The times I find challenging (where treatment worked to remove most ectoparasites) is when clients have used formalin-based chemicals, organophosphates, or anthelmintics. In these cases, I examine for evidence of microscopic damages in the skin and gills.

Efficacy of commercially available products against Gyrodactylus turnbulli infections on guppies Poecilia reticulate
> Dis Aquat Organ. 2015 Jul 23;115(2):129-37. doi: 10.3354/dao02886.
> Efficacy of commercially available products against Gyrodactylus turnbulli infections on guppies Poecilia reticulata.
> Schelkle B1, Snellgrove D, Jones LL, Cable J.
> Author information
> 1School of Biosciences, Cardiff University, Museum Avenue, Cardiff CF10 3AX, UK.
> Abstract
> The demand for ornamental fish has led to a steep rise in aquaculture for the hobbyist trade, promoting the emergence, persistence and spread of various infectious diseases. Complete control of disease outbreaks with antibiotics and chemical-based medicines is rare, but plant compounds may herald potential alternatives effective against a range of pathogens. Melafix® and Pimafix® are formulated with the essential oils cajuput (Melaleuca cajuputi) and West Indian bay (Pimenta racemosa) and are marketed against bacterial and fungal infections, respectively. Previous experiments showed high efficacy of emulsified cajuput oil against gyrodactylids; the current study tested Melafix® and Pimafix® and their individual compounds against Gyrodactylus turnbulli infecting the guppies Poecilia reticulata. In particular, a combination treatment of Melafix® and Pimafix® was highly effective at reducing in vitro survival of parasites from 15 to 2 h and eradicating 95% of gyrodactylids in vivo. The unexpected high efficacy of this combination treatment is likely explained by the high content of terpenes and phenol propanoids in the cajuput and West Indian bay oils, as well as the anti-helminthic properties of the emulsifier Crovol PK 70. Hence, Melafix® and Pimafix® effectively reduce gyrodactylid burdens on fish, increasing the chances of efficient disease control in ornamental fish.


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