Pruthviraj Patil, an 11 year old boy from Sangli near Mumbai in India is desperately seeking a cure for his condition that affects only around 50 people in the world.
Like Dede, the ‘tree man‘, Pruthviraj Patil also suffers from unexpected growths, in this case hair grows all over his face and body.
The only areas of Patil’s body that are not completely covered with hair are the palms of his hands and the soles of his feet.
As you may have guessed from the photos, hypertrichosis is a rare genetic condition that is also known as ‘Werewolf Syndrome‘.
I wonder if, in days gone by, people with this condition were the cause of tales of lycanthropy?
Patil hopes that doctors will one day find a cure for the condition which had originally led to children at his school teasing him, though fortunately they now accept him for who he is.
Despite a level of acceptance from his schoolfriends, Patil hardly ever leaves his village due to the fear of being teased by those who don’t know him and understand his rare ailment.
Patil’s parents have tried many possible cures with no avail, the most promising of which had been laser surgery.
Whilst such a procedure did indeed remove the hair, it soon grew back.
Experts believe that his rare genetic condition was probably caused by a random flaw whilst he was in his mother’s womb.
Vinay Saoji, a plastic surgeon, has examined Patil and was able to confirm that his condition is extremely rare.
“Hairy nevus, where a person has patches of excess growth, or hirsurism, is not uncommon, but hair persisting all over the body is very rare,” he added.
As there is currently no known solution to Patil’s ailment, the boy has appealed to doctor’s to help find him a lasting cure.