Sarasota, FL (PRWEB) October 26, 2007
Manager Clint Hurdle and his Colorado Rockies baseball team have set an example and sent a message: 'Don't give up on the underdog,' from a baseball team to individuals with Prader-Willi syndrome (PWS). No one can predict who will win the World Series this year, which began last night at Fenway Park in Boston. One thing is for certain, though: Clint and the Rockies are already champions to Prader-Willi Syndrome Association (USA) (PWSA (USA)).
Hurdle is the National Spokesperson for PWSA (USA). His daughter, Madison, was born and diagnosed with PWS five years ago. Hurdle has been on a mission ever since. To date that mission has raised hundreds of thousands of dollars for PWSA, given PWS new visibility in the public eye, enlisted the support of the Colorado Rockies organization, and put Clint in contact with families affected by PWS around the nation, offering them hope and encouragement.
The World Series presents Hurdle an impressive platform from which he can promote awareness of PWS and motivate others to do the same. His daughter's pediatricians at Partners in Pediatrics in Denver are sponsoring Pledge the World Series for PWS. For each Rockies win in the Series, fans and friends can make a donation to PWSA (USA) on its Web site, http://www.pwsausa.org. Hurdle is talking about PWS and sharing his story wherever possible in his media interviews, changing the perception of PWS from negative to positive almost single-handedly. The Rockies organization donated a public service announcement (PSA) featuring Hurdle and his daughter, hoping to identify the more than 75% of affected individuals estimated to be unknowingly living with PWS because they have not been diagnosed or tested. The PSA can be viewed on the PWSA (USA) Web site or on YouTube at http://youtube.com/watch?v=Vr5nSFf2p2Y.
It's no surprise that the PWS community is rooting for the Rockies, who overcame underdog status to win their first National League Championship ever. Like the Rockies, families affected by PWS have defied the odds, proving themselves able to tough it out when faced with the challenges that come with this lifelong, life-threatening condition. PWSA (USA) is collecting messages on its Web site to send to Hurdle and the Rockies from those who want to express their appreciation and wish them luck.
PWS is a complex syndrome that affects appetite, growth, metabolism, cognitive function and behavior and affects one in 12,000 to 15,000 births, including both males and females and all ethnic groups. Because of an abnormality in the hypothalamus area of the brain, individuals who have PWS never receive the message of satiety; they are always hungry. They may experience rapid and excessive weight gain due to a metabolic dysfunction. Currently there is no cure and, to date, no medications or procedures are successful in staving off the relentless hunger. However, growth hormone has been effective in increasing height, improving body mass and metabolism, and boosting strength and energy. With early intervention and proper management, including environmental supports and dietary restrictions, most individuals who have PWS can maintain healthy weights and have a normal life expectancy.
PWSA (USA), a 501(c)(3) charity, is the only national membership organization that helps children and adults with PWS and their families through every stage of life. It was formed in 1975 to serve parents, professionals, and other interested citizens. Headquartered in Sarasota, FL, the organization funds PWS research and provides crisis and family support, education, and advocacy. Hospitals, physicians, and parents from all over the world consult with PWSA (USA) with medical emergencies and questions daily. A 24-hour medical emergency hotline is offered at 800-926-4797 to advise and assist families and medical and other professionals.
For more information about PWS or to make a tax-deductible donation, please contact PWSA (USA) toll-free at (800) 926-4797 or (941) 312-0400 or visit their Web site at http://www.pwsausa.org.