Tree Man of Java Getting Treatment, Still Kind of Bark-y But Much Better Now

We posted about Dede Koswara, dubbed the "Tree Man of Java," whose hands and feet were covered in bark-like tissues, before on Neatorama.

Doctors operated on Dede back in January and have now removed growths from his hands and feet:

Dede's ordeal began when he was 15 and cut his knee in an accident. A small wart developed on his lower leg and spread uncontrollably.

Eventually he had to give up work as a builder and fisherman, and scratch a living in a traveling freak show.

The documentary team took American dermatology expert Dr Anthony Gaspari to Indonesia to see if he could find a cure. Dr Gaspari, of the University of Maryland, concluded Dede's affliction was caused by the Human Papilloma Virus (HPV), a fairly common infection usually causing only small warts.

Dede's problem was that he has an extremely rare immune system deficiency, leaving his body unable to contain the warts.

The virus was therefore able to "hijack the cellular machinery of his skin cells", ordering them to produce massive amounts of
the substance causing tree-like growths known as "cutaneous horns".

Link - Thanks özi

I hate looking at pictures like this. I know it's not really exploitation if it's in the news, or if you didn't got looking, but I still hate thinking that I'm getting a thrill looking at another persons misery.
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