Donna Windsor (Verity Rushworth) has revealed in tonight’s double bill of Emmerdale that she is terminally ill with mesothelioma and has –at best – a few years left to live.
After being taken to hospital with a suspected case of concussion, Donna revealed to the staff what exactly is wrong with her.
“I know what’s wrong with me and you’re not going to be able to sort it,” she said. “I did bang my head, but that’s not why I went dizzy. I’ve got mesothelioma.”
“Of the lungs?” asked the doctor, receiving a nod from Donna in reply.
“Pain meds mess up my balance sometimes. My family don’t know,” she continued, going on to say that her condition is terminal.
Mesothelioma can develop in the tissues covering in the lungs and abdomen and is a cancer of the mesothelial cells. These cells cover the outer surface of the internal body organs, forming a lining that is called the mesothelium.
Donna Windsor returned to the village last month after an absence of five years and revealed to ex-husband Marlon (Mark Charnock) that he is the father of her daughter April. However, by the climax of tonight’s episodes, Marlon remains unaware of Donna’s diagnosis.
Yet a spokesperson for Emmerdale revealed to RadioTimes.com that Donna's behaviour will soon be attracting attention: "It would be fair to say that although Donna is suffering from a terminal illness alone it won't be long until someone in the village is suspicious that there is more to her return than just wanting Marlon to have a relationship with his daughter."
Speaking about her return to the ITV soap, Verity Rushworth said recently: "I'm back for five months. The storyline was too good to turn down and there are lots of twists and turns. I'm not going to give away the ending, but there's plenty of high drama. But I think I'm definitely just going to be here for the five months."