Is this a parasite on my goldfish?

Liv2011

Tank
What is the water volume of the tank? 50g (It’s like a 55g but not quite as tall.)
How long has the tank been running? Six years
Does it have a filter? Two AquaClear 70s
Does it have a heater? Yes (I keep it off, since room temp never gets too low for this tank)
What is the water temperature? 75-78 degrees
What is the entire stocking of this tank? (Please list all fish and inverts.) 1 goldfish, 2 bristlenose plecos, 2 nerite snails

Maintenance
How often do you change the water? Every week.
How much of the water do you change? 70+%
What do you use to treat your water? Seachem Prime
Do you vacuum the substrate or just the water? I vacuum the substrate

*Parameters - Very Important
Did you cycle your tank before adding fish? IDK. In any case, this fish wasn’t there at that point.
What do you use to test the water? API Freshwater Master test kit
What are your parameters? We need to know the exact numbers, not just “fine” or “safe”.
Ammonia: 0-0.25 ppm
Nitrite: 0 ppm
Nitrate: 30 ppm (?!)
pH: 7.6
...which is weird, because it’s the first time in at least a year that my test results were anything besides 0 and 5 ppm for ammonia and nitrate. I did my water change Saturday; why is it so high already? Maybe I need to take the veggies/scraps out sooner. (I give the fish 24 hours to eat what they will.)
Feeding
How often do you feed your fish? Every day
How much do you feed your fish? For pellets, this fish always gets at least 5 mid-water...IDEK how many he picks out of the gravel afterwards. For leafy greens I just stick in the entire leaf and he grazes until it’s gone or only scraps remain.
What brand of food do you feed your fish? Omega One pellets and Fluval Bug Bites. I also feed blanched veggies 2-3 times a week.
Do you feed frozen? No
Do you feed freeze-dried foods? Occasionally

Illness & Symptoms
How long have you had this fish? Over a year
How long ago did you first notice these symptoms? Something like a week ago, maybe a bit longer
In a few words, can you explain the symptoms? He has noticeably more missing scales than usual, and there’s something white sticking out of his side. (It’s not ich; I’ve seen that a lot. There’s only the one thing on him in this case, and it’s the wrong shape. Ich spreads much faster IME.) I don’t think I’ve seen him flashing, but it’s definitely a possibility with the missing scales. I did see him hit the gravel with his side pretty hard when he was tearing at some blanched kale.
Have you started any treatment for the illness? No
Was your fish physically ill or injured upon purchase? His fins were badly nipped when I got him, but they healed up nicely within a few weeks.
How has its behavior and appearance changed, if at all? He has quite a few missing scales, and it looks like there’s a small white thing sticking off his side. His activity levels and appetite are normal.

Explain your emergency situation in detail. (Please give a clear explanation of what is going on, include details from the beginning of the illness leading up to now)
In case it’s relevant, the other goldfish I had in this tank died of a form of dropsy a month ago. At about that same time, this goldfish (the one this thread is about) developed a bit of a bump in his side. The bump disappeared a few days after I started feeding veggies. (I still have photos if it if anyone thinks it’s relevant.)
I think the first think I noticed about this new problem was the white thing on his side. I saw the missing scales shortly afterwards, and when I was vacuuming the gravel. Also, there are suddenly some rips in his fins, which I supposed could be from any flashing.
When I look at the pics I took Saturday, it like the white thing moved to his other side (???) and got a little bigger/easier to photograph (!!!), so I’ll include pics from both days.
Saturday:
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Today:
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Meanwhile he goes about acting like there isn’t anything sticking out of his side.
In conclusion, I am very confused. The only thing I can think of for the white thing to be is some sort of parasite (which someone actually suggested as a cause of the bump last month, though I ended up dismissing that possibility because the bump went away). Should I quarantine him? The only reason I haven’t already done that is because my QT is only a 10g and he’s grown a LOT in the last year, so I don’t want to have him in there if it isn’t necessary. If it is a parasite, should I treat the entire tank, or just him?
 

Liv2011

Anyone?
I’m moving him to QT today, just in case. I might also do a water change to get the nitrates down.
Should I try a salt dip or something? I’m worried about him.
 
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Liv2011

He is now in QT. I’m probably going to do a salt dip.
I still don’t know what to do about the main tank. I don’t even know what this is yet, let alone what to do about it. Just in case, I’m keeping the goldfish that I bought recently in my other QT tank until I/we figure out what’s going on. (On the plus side, I can now fully justify having two QTs up and running.)
Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated.
 
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