Diagnosis and treatment of GH deficiency in Prader–Willi syndrome

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review


Prader–Willi syndrome (PWS) results from under-expression of the paternally-derived chromosomal region 15q11-13. Growth failure is a recognized feature of PWS, and both quantitative and qualitative defects of the GH/IGF-I axis revealing GH deficiency (GHD) have been demonstrated in most children with PWS. In PWS adults, criteria for GHD are biochemically fulfilled in 8–38% of the studied cohorts. Published data support benefits of early institution of GH therapy (GHT) in PWS children, with positive effects on statural growth, body composition, metabolic homeostasis, and neurocognitive function. Like in pediatric PWS, GHT also yields beneficial effects on lean and body fat, exercise capacity, and quality of life of PWS adults. Although GHT has been generally administered safely in PWS children and adults, careful surveillance of risks is mandatory during prolonged GH replacement for all PWS individuals.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)785-794
Number of pages10
JournalBest Practice and Research: Clinical Endocrinology and Metabolism
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - Dec 1 2016


  • GH deficiency
  • GH therapy
  • Prader–Willi syndrome
  • short stature

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism
  • Endocrinology


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