By Jack Flanagan

AN INDONESIAN man known as “tree man” due to the scaly warts covering his body has passed away after a long battle with illness

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Dede, dubbed “tree man”, had repeatedly undergone treatment for his skin abnormality, a result of the human papilloma virus

Dede Koswara died in the Hasan Sadikin hospital in Badung, Indonesia, on the morning of January 30.

Koswara suffered from a rare disease, Lewandowsky-Lutz dysplasia, which results in uncontrolled human papilloma virus (HPV) infections and the growth of scaly warts resembling tree bark.

The condition meant that branch-like growths sprouted from Dede’s hands and feet

The disease was so severe Koswara’s hands and feet were covered with more than 13lbs of warts, also called “cutaneous horns”.

The severity of his condition gave him international notoriety - including several feature-length documentaries highlighting his plight.

The disease was so severe Koswara’s hands and feet were covered with more than 13lbs of warts

The warts were severely debilitating, preventing the proper use of his hands and feet - and were believed locally to have been the result of a curse. 

His wife of ten years also left him after he couldn’t support them and their two children.

The severity of his condition gave him international notoriety, including several feature length documentaries

In 2008, Koswara had 13lb (6kg) of warts surgically removed from his body. The operation was such a success that he could play Sudoku and wear flip-flops.

But the growths continued to return, requiring two surgeries a year to keep the infections down.

With the growths continuing to return this requiring two surgeries a year to keep the infections down

Koswara died of a complicated series of health problems, including hepatitis, liver and gastric disorders, according to one of the doctors treating him. 

Three months before he died he was checked into hospital.

Three months before Dede Koswara died he was checked into hospital

“He was resigned to his illness. He must’ve been pretty tough to face all the insults he suffered over the years,” his doctor said.

According to his sister, his was unable to feed himself or speak because he was too weak.

These pictures show the extent to which the growths returned to Dede's body

She added that Dede remained estranged from his family up until his death - but according to those treating him, he never gave up hope of a cure.

“Dede wanted to recover, despite his disease,” his nurse said. 

“He was coping with his illness, even though people despised him as someone cursed.

The warts were severely debilitating, preventing the proper use of his hands and feet

“He was bored, resting in bed in the hospital, and often smoked to pass the time.

“He wanted to go back to being a carpenter and starting a home business.”