BROOKSIDE RON FIGHTS FOR LIFE.
FORMER Brookside actor Vince Earl is critically ill in hospital.
The soap star, who played womanising Ron Dixon, is being treated for Goodpasture's syndrome, a rare disorder of the body's auto-immune system. The condition, suffered by just one in two million people, affects the kidneys and the lungs.
Last night, Vince's family said he was responding well to dialysis.
Son Stephen Earl, 32, said: "He is seriously ill and was very unwell for the first couple of days but he is quite bright.
"Goodpasture's syndrome is very rare but the success rate is pretty good so we are all hopeful. We've been told he will have to spend a minimum of three weeks in hospital but we don't know when he will be able to come home."
Vince, 66, from Chester, was working as a stand-up comedian on a cruise ship in the Mediterranean when he became ill.
The grandad-of-five was taken to hospital on Wednesday last week.
Stephen said: "He started to feel unwell on the cruise but his symptoms were the same as the flu.
"Then he became very unwell and got pneumonia. He had to have dialysis because his kidneys were not working properly but they didn't know why.
"They only made the actual diagnosis over the weekend."
SOAP J As Ron with young bride Bev