Ian Beale, the only surviving character from the first night of BBC1's flagship serial drama, EastEnders in 1985, was diagnosed with Type 2 diabetes in tonight's episode. The diagnosis came after being warned by his GP he was at risk in March this year.
Since March, viewers have seen Ian trying to make healthy lifestyle changes to reduce his risk, but his willpower has failed to match his good intentions.
The storyline helps raise awareness of how serious Type 2 diabetes can be as a condition. Ian's plotline has seen a huge spike in visitors to our website to use our online Know Your Risk tool.
Our Clinical Advice team have been working closely with the EastEnders script writing team, with the aim to make these scenes close to real life.
Actor Adam Woodyatt said: "When I was told of the storyline that Ian was to be diagnosed with Type 2 diabetes, it was a real eye-opener to me on just how serious the condition is."
Chris Askew, chief executive of Diabetes UK, said: "It requires careful management and the fact that 11.9m people in the country are potentially at risk showed me just how serious. The work Diabetes UK is doing to help people living with it is vital, and it's really important that EastEnders is showing viewers what someone diagnosed with Type 2 can experience."