Prader-Willi syndrome


Prader-Willi (PRAH-dur VIL-e) syndrome causes a number of physical symptoms, including hard-to-control hunger (hyperphagia), early childhood obesity, learning difficulties and behavioural challenges.1

What causes Prader-Willi syndrome?

Prader-Willi syndrome is caused by a change, or deletion, to a part of the DNA, which disrupts the normal functions of certain areas in our brain that control hunger, growth, sexual development, body temperature, and sleep.1

What are the signs of Prader-Willi syndrome?

The main signs of Prader-Willi syndrome include:

  • Hard-to-control hunger
  • Muscle weakness
  • Learning difficulties and delay in development
  • Behavioural challenges

What can you do?

If you think you have spotted one or more of these signs in yourself, or your child, download and complete our discussion guide to help prepare for an appointment with your doctor or nurse.


  • 1

    Driscoll DJ, et al. GeneReviews. Seattle (WA): University of Washington, Seattle; 1993–2023