What’s wrong with Oliver Battersby in Coronation Street and is the toddler going to die?

LEANNE Battersby and Steve McDonald's world came crashing down as their son Oliver was diagnosed with an incurable form of mitochondrial disease. 

But is Oliver going to die? Here’s everything you need to know…

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What’s wrong with Oliver in Coronation Street?

Monday night’s episode of Coronation Street saw Leanne and Steve’s world crumble as Oliver was officially diagnosed with mitochondrial disease. 

The doctor had warned that the toddler might have the disease after he was rushed into hospital in April after suffering from multiple seizures, but Leanne and Steve had remained in denial about his possible illness.

In a state of shock following Oliver's official diagnosis on Monday, Leanne demanded a second opinion and refused to accept the doctor's verdict.

The soap has been working closely with The Lily Foundation, a charity that supports families and funds medical research into mitochondrial disease, in order to ensure the storyline accurately portrays the experience of families with children affected by the disease.

Liz Curtis, CEO and co-founder of The Lily Foundation said: "All of us at The Lily Foundation are excited to be working with Coronation Street on a storyline about a child with a mitochondrial disorder, and grateful to the show for highlighting an issue that affects hundreds of families in the UK.

"For everyone who has worked hard for years to raise awareness about mitochondrial diseases, in particular for families living with a diagnosis and those who have lost a child, having their story told on one of the nation's most popular soap operas is truly momentous news.

"There is currently no cure for mitochondrial diseases, so those diagnosed face an uncertain future.

"We have been impressed with how sensitively the show's researchers and script writers have handled this, listening to those who have been affected by the disease and the doctors who support them.

"We see this as a very positive step in our ongoing fight to raise awareness about mitochondrial diseases, support affected families and fund research to find a cure."

Is Oliver Battersby going to die in Corrie?

The incurable form of mitochondrial disease will eventually take Oliver’s life. 

Soap boss Ian MacLeod said of the storyline: “This is a story about a family coming to terms with the most difficult news anyone can face and the ways in which this strengthens and shatters relationships in unpredictable ways.

“We want to do justice to the stories of the many thousands of families who have to deal with diagnoses similar to Oliver’s, be it a mitochondrial disorder or another life-limiting condition.

"It is something that, as a society, we find difficult to talk about but which is all too common.

"The taboo around these illnesses can mean awareness is low, which means funding for research is low. Aside from telling a brilliant, moving and emotionally complex story, we really hope to draw attention to this subject to change this situation for the better."

How is Leanne’s sister Toyah affected by Oliver’s diagnosis?

Monday night’s episode saw Toyah and Imran put their fostering plans on hold as the news of Oliver’s illness reached them.

Speaking about how Leanne and Oliver’s tragic storyline will begin to involve Toyah, actress Leanne actress Jane Danson told Metro.co.uk: "I know what’s coming up – there are massive stories come out of this that I’m less a part of.

"It’s structured so well. It’s so hard to watch but we can’t push it too long as it’s a lot to take in – we were right in the middle when we finished so I am looking forward to exploring the journey further. I want to get our heads down and get on with it.

"Toyah will be without a doubt Leanne’s biggest rock. It’s lovely for Georgia too as we’ve both been quiet before this. The characters are so different but there’s this massive bond.

"Toyah’s the gentler one and Leanne’s the stroppy one! We have always loved that about them but they absolutely love each other. We’re so lucky to get on the way we do."

She added: "Toyah becomes a huge part of this – and this opens up another big story for her which will be well explored. It is a massive involvement – which is great."

How is Leanne’s other son Simon Barlow affected?

The news of the diagnosis has also brought Simon’s world crashing down as he overheard Leanne telling Steve that Oliver is all she ever wanted.

Later in the week, Simon tells Peter what he heard Leanne saying and decides to stay with his dad. 

Leanne then tells Nick she feels terrible, leading Nick to square up to Peter and accuse him of taking Simon off Leanne. 

Is Leanne going to end up losing both sons?

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