Coronation Street viewers divided over rapid progression of Paul’s MND

Coronation Street fans were left heartbroken on Wednesday ( 23 August) when Paul Foreman’s Motor Neurone Disease took another devastating turn as he found he was unable to climb the stairs to his home.

As regular viewers will know, Paul was diagnosed with the incurable degenerative condition earlier this year, which over time will gradually impact on his ability to move, to speak, to eat and even to breathe on his own.

In recent weeks, Paul has been struggling to come to terms with his diagnosis, with his condition worsening this week, while he was tasked with babysitting his nephew Bryn.

While trying to keep up with the youngster, Paul fell as he tried to stop him from running off, something which he later realised meant he was no longer fit enough to take care of his young relative.

To make matters worse, later in the episode, Paul’s ability to walk was so impaired, he required assistance to help him up the stairs to the flat he shares with partner Billy, after realising he couldn’t tackle them solo.

As the heartbreaking scenes unfolded on screen, several fans couldn’t help but take to social media to air their concerns over the progression of Paul’s illness, as he had only been diagnosed with the condition in April.

“Must be so frustrating and scary for Paul, his MND is progressing quite quickly…” commented one fan.

A second then weighed in adding: “Why are they speeding up Paul's illness. I'm sure MND sufferers decline isn't so fast. If they are trying to highlight something, they should do it in a timely fashion.”

Before a third commented: “If you're going to do this storyline justice, then please have a realistic timeline and not one that's accelerated."

However, despite the criticism from fans, the timeline is a realistic portrayal of a diagnosis with Motor Neurone Disease, with progression times varying from years in rare cases, through to only a matter of weeks in others.

The storyline, although hard to watch, has been produced in collaboration with the MND Association, with ITV bosses taking great care to make sure the condition was portrayed sensitively and accurately on screen.

However, Paul’s story is just a snapshot of one person’s journey and may not represent every sufferer’s experience.

Speaking about their involvement in the project, the MND association said: ”The team at Coronation Street are showing one person’s progression and one person's experience without suggesting that is what happens to everyone.

“And of course, Coronation Street is a drama and there has to be a certain amount of artistic license.

" From what we've seen so far we are confident that our community will recognise conversations, situations, challenges and solutions they themselves have faced.

“We are really grateful to the scriptwriters and production team at Coronation Street for the time and effort they have taken so far to get this right for the MND community.”

Coronation Street continues Monday, Wednesday and Friday at 8pm on ITV and ITVX

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