“Bonjour, je m'appelle Oshadi”

BMJ 2004; 329 doi: (Published 25 November 2004) Cite this as: BMJ 2004;329:1280
  1. E L Chandrakantha (, consultant paediatrician
  1. Northampton General Hospital

    This summer our family went on a holiday to Geneva. This was our first expedition outside the English speaking world, and neither my wife nor I speak a word of French. But the world has many wonders to see, and language barriers can be overcome. I found initiating the conversation under these circumstances to be the most difficult part. However, a smile and a “Bonjour” was usually sufficient to break the ice in any conversation. Of course, this didn't always happen; on one occasion, while I was struggling, my son, Oshadi, came forward and said, “Bonjour, je m'appelle Oshadi.”

    This was extraordinary, as Oshadi is not an ordinary child. He has Prader-Willi syndrome and thus is a child with special needs. Oshadi was born in Sri Lanka in 1990 and had …

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