Joseph Brown is to be diagnosed with Lyme's disease on 'Coronation Street'.

Joseph Brown is to receive a shock diagnosis in upcoming scene on Coronation Street

Joseph Brown is to receive a shock diagnosis in upcoming scene on Coronation Street

The 12-year-old - who is played by William Flanagan on the ITV1 soap opera - has worried his dad Chesney Brown (Sam Aston) and stepmother Gemma Winter (Dolly-Rose Campbell) in recent weeks as he exhibited signs of a mystery illness but in upcoming scenes, the schoolboy will receive the news that he is suffering from the bacterial infection that is caused by the bite of an infected tick.

In the last few weeks, viewers have seen Gemma removed from the home after being wrongly accused of poisoning her stepson but when Joseph collapses at home in front of his dad and grandmother Bernie (Jane Hazlegrove), he is rushed to hospital where medics explain that it is likely he had been bitten on a recent camping holiday.

The family is relieved to hear that Joseph - whose biological mother Katy Armstrong (Georgia May Foote) died off-screen in a car crash in 2017 - is expected to make a full recovery.

To develop the storyline, 'Coronation Street' has been working closely with Lyme Disease UK who have been consulted on scripts regarding symptoms and treatment.

Julia Knight is a retired Specialist Practitioner Paediatric Nurse in Community Nursing, who has experienced Lyme disease herself.

She volunteers for the charity Lyme Disease UK as their Press and Community Outreach Manager, giving talks, interviews and writing articles to raise awareness of Lyme disease and how to prevent it.

She said: "It has been my great pleasure to work with the Coronation Street scriptwriters to give them advice and pointers so that they could produce a storyline that is both realistic and engaging. Lyme disease can easily be overlooked if a person only shows viral-type symptoms initially, as in the storyline.

"Raising awareness of the disease and giving people the information about how to prevent it is essential.

"With knowledge, bites can be prevented, and awareness of possible symptoms means that people who do contract the disease can seek medical advice promptly.