This is a case where I wait and watch very carefully while getting a plan in mind IF I need to do something. I do not shotgun treat without knowing what it is I'm treating and at this point you do not know. My outlook is that many meds are stressful by nature and doing the wrong thing to the whole tank can be far worse than doing nothing for a single fish. Don't do chemo just because it looks like you might have cancer? A small mistake can lead to a full blown death spiral for the whole tank, so the better choice would be to move the single fish to QT but I will assume there is no QT available, so the next best bet for me would be to wait. Waiting will certainly tell you if it is ich as the spots will quickly move and change. If it is simply an injury type thing, it may get better by itself. If it gets bigger so that you can actually see it, then you will have far more reliable info to go on when choosing a med.
Meanwhile, I see no ich as I would expect the side area to be one of the last spots and far more likely to show on tail or fins. Tiny white spots do not say fungus to me as likely as simple scale damage which may stay the same for weeks but gradually get better.
This is so over the top dramatic.
Who was asking for a shotgun treatment? Are you referring to my recommendations? And what does this mean to you anyway? Does this mean that anything beyond "waiting" is a shotgun treatment?
Or do you mean clean water, salt and Paraguard is a shotgun treatment that will lead to a death spiral in the tank? Please. Lets not be hyperbolic.
Edit: You need to go back and read my recommendations more carefully. Take note of where I asked the OP to "Assess" the situation. Giving them certain things to look for to evaluate the seriousness of the situation.
It is most certainly damaged scales. That is evident and clear. I see fungal growth. That is clear to me. Not you? Well, then, then disagree.
Therefore, I stick with my diagnosis and recommended treatment. If the OP has a hospital tank then it would be best to treat this fish there. But, from the initial post, its obvious that any treatment needs to be done in this tank. None of the recommendations will in the least lead to a "death spiral".
There was no justification for you to say that I was recommending "Chemo when something merely looked like cancer."