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BROOKSIDE STAR VINCE STRUCK BY RARE BUG; Family hopeful as star taken ill on cruise ship.

Byline: TINA MILES

A MUCH-LOVED Merseyside actor was critically ill in hospital today battling a rare disorder.

Former Brookside star Vince Earl, who played Ron Dixon in the Liverpool-made soap, is being treated for Goodpasture's syndrome - which affects just one in two million people.

His family said although the Birkenhead-born comedian was critically ill he was responding well to kidney dialysis and the treatment at Arrowe Park Hospital.

His son Stephen Earl, 32, said: "He is seriously ill and was very unwell for the first couple of days but he is quite bright.

"He's been laughing and joking and has come to terms with it and he is ready to give it a good fight.

"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.

"All the family are going to see him and he's responding well to the treatment."

The 66-year-old singer, who now lives in Chester with his wife Irene, 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 the Countess of Chester Hospital last Wednesday before he was admitted to the Wirral hospital the following day.

Stephen said: "He started to feel unwell while he was on the cruise but his symptoms were the same as the flu.

"He became very unwell and he had pneumonia. He had to have dialysis because his kidneys were not working properly but they didn't know the reason why.

"They made the actual diagnosis over the weekend."

Friends sent messages of support to the cruise line entertainer, who is also dad to son Vince and daughters Nicole, 36, and Kimberley, 30.

Birkenhead-born actress get-Pauline Daniels said: "I've known Vince for 30 years,we worked for the same agent. for www.

"He was the comic that I always wanted to be and he joked that I had a face for comedy. I've done panto with Vince and he was a good friend to me when we were doing The Comedians.

"My husband Paul Duval knows him well too. We both wish him to get well very soon and we hope all of his family are OK."

Vince started in the business when he was 11- years- old and became part of the sixties' scene by performing with his band, The Talismen.

Vince later joined Rory Storm and The Hurricanes on tour. Their recording of America made the number one slot in Texas.

Vince formed The Vince Earl Attraction and became one of the top well message Vince, visit liverpool co.uk rated acts on the cabaret circuit. He is best known as one of Brookside's biggest stars.

Goodpasture's syndrome is an autoimmune disorder that can affect the kidneys and lungs.

It is a condition in which the body's own defence system reacts against some part of the body itself.

When the immune system is working normally, it creates antibodies to fight off infections.

In Goodpasture's syndrome, the immune system makes antibodies that attack the kidneys and potentially the lungs.

The reason this happens is not fully understood. Some researchers have identified a number of possible causes including viral infections, genetics and exposure to certain chemicals.

CAPTION(S):

ILL: Merseyside actor, singer and comedian Vince Earl STAR: Actor Vince Earl in character as Brookside's Ron Dixon with fellow soap stars Michael Starke and Sue Jenkins and Bernie Nolan
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Publication:Liverpool Echo (Liverpool, England)
Date:Sep 8, 2010
Words:592
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