Zak Dingle has been a changed man since he attacked – and nearly killed – his son Cain (Jeff Hordley) and in upcoming episodes, his spiral into depression and worry sees him becoming increasingly unstable.
Things came to a scary head for Zak (Steve Halliwell) recently when he collapsed in the pub with a suspected heart attack, however, it transpired that he’d actually experienced a panic attack, which can of course mimic the symptoms of a myocardial infarction.
However, he point blank refused to believe he could possibly be suffering from anything that hinted at mental illness, and ever since, he’s been doing everything he can to keep the diagnosis a secret from his family.
But when his wife Lisa (Jane Cox) becomes increasingly concerned about him, Zak tells her he’ll go to see their GP…
But the doctor can only reiterate what the doctors at the hospital told Zak; that physically, he’s fine. And when the unsuspecting doctor suggest counseling might help him, Zak loses his temper.
He’s furious to be told yet again that he, the stalwart and patriarch of the Dingle clan, could be anything less than fully mentally sound, so he lashes out at the scared medic, prompting him to call in security men who drag Zak out of the surgery.
A show source told the Star on Sunday, “Zak sees mental illness as a sign of weakness and can’t get his head around the idea that what he is going through is not physical.
“He gets very angry and tells the doctor he must have got it wrong.
“Zak knows he’s now got to face his family and tell them there’s nothing wrong with him – it’s all in his head.
“And for such a proud man it’s going to be a hard thing to do.”
Viewers can see Zak’s showdown at the surgery on ITV1 a week on Thursday.