Questions about rare diseases?

Disease at a Glance

Summary
Prader-Willi syndrome (PWS) is a genetic condition that affects many parts of the body. Infants with PWS have severe hypotonia (low muscle tone), feeding difficulties, and slow growth. Other signs and symptoms often include short stature, hypogonadism, developmental delays, cognitive impairment, and distinctive behavioral characteristics such as temper tantrums, stubbornness, and obsessive-compulsive tendencies. PWS is caused by missing or non-working genes on chromosome 15. Most cases are not inherited and occur randomly. Rarely, a genetic change responsible for PWS can be inherited.
Resource(s) for Medical Professionals and Scientists on This Disease:

About Prader-Willi syndrome

Many rare diseases have limited information. Currently GARD aims to provide the following information for this disease:

  • Population Estimate:Fewer than 50,000 people in the U.S. have thisdisease.
  • Symptoms:May start to appear during Pregnancy and as a Newborn.
  • Cause:This disease is caused by a change in the genetic material (DNA).
  • Organizations:Patient organizations are available to help find a specialist, or advocacy and support for this specific disease.
  • Categories:Neurological DiseaseBirth DefectEndocrine DiseaseGenetic Disease
When Do Symptoms of Prader-Willi syndrome Begin?
Symptoms of this disease may start to appear during Pregnancy and as a Newborn.

The age symptoms may begin to appear differs between diseases. Symptoms may begin in a single age range, or during several age ranges. The symptoms from some diseases may begin at any age. Knowing when symptoms began to appear can help medical providers find the correct diagnosis.
Prenatal Selected
Before Birth
Newborn Selected
Birth-4 weeks
Infant
1-23 months
Child
2-11 years
Adolescent
12-18 years
Adult
19-65 years
Older Adult
65+ years
Symptoms may start to appear during Pregnancy and as a Newborn.

Symptoms

The types of symptoms experienced, and their intensity, may vary among people with this disease. Your experience may be different from others, and you should consult your primary care provider (PCP) for more information.

This list does not include all possible symptoms related to this disease, but they may include:

72 Symptoms

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Body Systems

Symptoms related to this disease may affect different systems of the body. Use the 'Filter and Sort' function to learn more about which body system(s) are affected by this disease and their associated symptom(s).

Causes

This section is currently in development. 

Advocacy and Support Groups

How Can Patient Organizations Help?

Patient organizations can help patients and families connect. They build public awareness of the disease and are a driving force behind research to improve patients' lives. They may offer online and in-person resources to help people live well with their disease. Many collaborate with medical experts and researchers.

Services of patient organizations differ, but may include:

  • Ways to connect to others and share personal stories
  • Easy-to-read information
  • Up-to-date treatment and research information
  • Patient registries
  • Lists of specialists or specialty centers
  • Financial aid and travel resources

Please note: GARD provides organizations for informational purposes only and not as an endorsement of their services. Please contact an organization directly if you have questions about the information or resources it provides.

Patient Organizations

7 Organizations

Organization Name

Who They Serve

Helpful Links

Country

People With

Prader-Willi Syndrome

Helpful Links
Country

United States

People With

Prader-Willi Syndrome

Helpful Links
Country

United Kingdom

People With

Prader-Willi Syndrome

Helpful Links
Country

United States

People With

Rare Diseases

Helpful Links
Country

United States

People With

Rare Diseases

Helpful Links
Country

United States

People With

Rare Diseases

Helpful Links
Country

United States

People With

Rare Diseases

Helpful Links
Country

United States

Participating in Clinical Studies

Clinical studies are part of clinical research and at the heart of all medical advances, including rare diseases. Participating in research helps researchers ultimately uncover better ways to treat, prevent, diagnose, and understand human diseases.

What Are Clinical Studies?

  1. Clinical trials determine if a new test or treatment for a disease is effective and safe by comparing groups receiving different tests/treatments.
  2. Observational studies involve recording changes over time among a specific group of people in their natural settings.
Learn more about the different types of clinical studies, consent forms, questions you should ask before participating in clinical studies, and the difference between research and medical treatment.

Why Participate in Clinical Studies?

How Do You Find the Right Clinical Study?

  • Use ClincalTrials.gov button below to search for studies by disease, terms, or country.
  • Consult doctors, other trusted medical professionals, and patient organizations.
  • Enroll in databases to allow researchers from participating institutions to find you.

What if There Are No Available Clinical Studies?

What Are Clinical Studies?

Clinical studies are medical research involving people as participants. There are two main types of clinical studies:
  1. Clinical trials determine if a new test or treatment for a disease is effective and safe by comparing groups receiving different tests/treatments.
  2. Observational studies involve recording changes over time among a specific group of people in their natural settings.
Learn more about the different types of clinical studies, consent forms, questions you should ask before participating in clinical studies, and the difference between research and medical treatment.
Read More

Why Participate in Clinical Studies?

People participate in clinical trials for a variety of reasons. Participants with a disease may participate to help others, but also to possibly receive the newest treatment and additional care from clinical study staff. Healthy volunteers may also participate to help others and to contribute to moving science forward.People participate in clinical trials for a variety of reasons. Participants with a disease may participate to help others, but also to possibly receive the newest treatment and additional care from clinical study staff. Healthy volunteers may also participate to help others and to contribute to moving science forward.

How Do You Find the Right Clinical Study?

  • Use ClincalTrials.gov button below to search for studies by disease, terms, or country.
  • Consult doctors, other trusted medical professionals, and patient organizations.
  • Enroll in databases to allow researchers from participating institutions to find you.

What if There Are No Available Clinical Studies?

ClinicalTrials.gov, an affiliate of NIH, provides current information on clinical research studies in the United States and abroad. Talk to a trusted doctor before choosing to participate in any clinical study. We recommend checking this site often and searching for studies with related terms/synonyms to improve results.
Please contact GARD if you need help finding additional information or resources on rare diseases, including clinical studies. Note, GARD cannot enroll individuals in clinical studies.
Available toll-free Monday through Friday from 12 pm to 6 pm Eastern Time
(Except: Federal Holidays)
Use the contact form to send your questions to a GARD Information Specialist.

Please allow 2 to 10 business days for us to respond.
ClinicalTrials.gov, an affiliate of NIH, provides current information on clinical research studies in the United States and abroad. Talk to a trusted doctor before choosing to participate in any clinical study. We recommend checking this site often and searching for studies with related terms/synonyms to improve results.
Please contact GARD if you need help finding additional information or resources on rare diseases, including clinical studies. Note, GARD cannot enroll individuals in clinical studies.
Available toll-free Monday through Friday from 12 pm to 6 pm Eastern Time
(Except: Federal Holidays)
Use the contact form to send your questions to a GARD Information Specialist.

Please allow 2 to 10 business days for us to respond.

Take steps toward getting a diagnosis by working with your doctor, finding the right specialists, and coordinating medical care.

Last Updated: February 2023