Man Dubbed 'Human Coral Reef' Free of Shell-Like Growths

A man dubbed the "human coral reef" after huge, shell-like growths appeared all over his body has been cured.

Lin Tianzhuan, 38, began to notice the hard growths on his hands and feet when he was 13. As time passed, he was unable to move his arms and legs and said the "terrifying" condition made him feel like he was turning to stone.

He said people would scream when they saw him.

"They grew and grew and soon they were all over my arms and legs, my back and even my head,” said Tianzhuan, from Shuimen in southern China. "Gradually my shell became thicker and thicker and I could no longer bend my arms or my legs. It was very frightening."

But now, thanks to a year of treatment and surgery by doctors from a special skin clinic, he only has a few discolored patches of skin left to show.

“He may need radiotherapy for quite some time still but he has made very good progress," Dr. Liu Yinghong, vice president of Fuzhou Dermatosis Prevention Hospital said.”

His rare condition closely resembles that of Dede Koswara from Indonesia, who was dubbed the "tree man.”

Dede has been covered with the bark-like warts for more than 20 years. The growths are believed to be caused by the human papillomavirus (HPV) and began to appear on his skin after he cut his leg when he was 15-years-old.

Click here to see photos of Dede.

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