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Prader-Willi Syndrome Essay

Posted by admin as Sample papers

Sample Essay on Prader-Willi Syndrome

One should start by saying that Prader-Willi Syndrome is a complex genetic disorder that comprises the following:

  1. Short stature
  2. Retardation and lack of sexual development
  3. Mental/behavioral problems
  4. Reduced need for calories, with frequent involuntary consumption.
  5. Obesity

Despite the fact that Prader-Willi Syndrome is caused by the abnormality in chromosomes (#15) it is not considered to be a genetic disease but rather a spontaneous birth defect that typically occurs during inception. Thus, Prader-Willi Syndrome affects people of all races and colors and is not related to the age of the parents whose children are born with Prader-Willi Syndrome.

Speaking about the spread of Prader-Willi Syndrome, one should note that approximately 1 out of 13 thousand people in the USA has Prader-Willi Syndrome, while the birth defects are usually greater. Prader-Willi Syndrome is considered as one of the most popular topics to be studied in genetic clinics and research centers while is the greatest cause of obesity in the USA (Waters 90).

Children born with Prader-Willi Syndrome are unable to consume enough nutrients because they do not suck well. Hypotonia or the low muscle tone prevents them from getting enough milk. These kids are usually fed through a tube until their muscle control improves. The kids with Prader-Willi Syndrome while in kindergarten develop an excessive interest in food and thus by elementary school already get overweight if their food consumption is not restrained (Whittington 132).

Prader-Willi Syndrome sufferers have problems with the hypothalamus part of the brain that is responsible for the hunger and satiety. Furthermore, people affected with Prader-Willi Syndrome need less calories when ‘normal’ people, while having stronger hunger needs. The obesity of people affected with Prader-Willi Syndrome leads to severe illness and even death that is caused by high cholesterol levels, diabetes and other health problems-disorders that accompany obesity.

It had been proven that none of the modern appetite suppressants had effectively worked for those affected with Prader-Willi Syndrome. These people should follow a very low-calorie diet throughout their lives and should have supervision regarding their food consumption. It is advisable that the refrigerators and cabinets are kept locked in families that have people with Prader-Willi Syndrome.

People suffering from Prader-Willi Syndrome have a different appearance and quality of speech. These people as a rule have mental retardation and learning disabilities. These people typically are prone to stubbornness and argumentativeness. These people might have mental breakdowns and thus require a unique communication approach sometimes accompanied by a drug therapy.

Still people affected with Prader-Willi Syndrome can try to lead a normal life and achieve many things like attend and finish school, get a job and move across the country. Children who have Prader-Willi Syndrome require a special education classes and speech and occupational therapy. As most people affected with Prader-Willi Syndrome die from obesity related problems, it is believed that prevention of obesity will extend their lifespan and allow them to enjoy the life that ‘normal’ people do.

Holm, V., et al. (1993). Prader-Willi Syndrome; Consensus Diagnostic Criteria. Pediatrics, 91, 398-402.
Whittington, Joyce, (2002), Prader-Willi Syndrome : Development and Manifestations, Prentice Hall.
Waters, Jackie, (2002), Prader-Willi Syndrome: A Practical Guide (Resource Materials for Teachers Series), NY Random House.

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