EastEnders' Stuart Highway in addiction torment as he faces breast cancer surgery with painkillers

EASTENDERS' Stuart Highway is left petrified that his drug addiction will return as he faces breast cancer surgery with painkillers.

The hardman – played by Ricky Champ on the BBC One soap – has been struggling to come to terms with his breast cancer diagnosis and was pushing his girlfriend Rainie away.

In upcoming scenes next week, the doctor explains the surgery to Stuart and he wants to proceed as soon as possible.

But when they mention pain medication, Stuart begins to panic and fears for theworst.

Stuart, who has a history with drug additions, later confides in Mick and tells him that he feels like he’s being punished for his past.

He explains that he's worried that the pain medication that he’ll need as he recovers from life-saving surgery could trigger his addiction again.

Meanwhile, Rainie is also full aware that painkillers could spark a downward spiral for her partner after years of drug abuse herself.

How will Stuart cope?

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Last week, viewers watched Stuart punch barman Mick Carter, convinced that he was having an affair with Rainie.

But he soon got the wrong end of the stick and finally came clean to Raine about his diagnosis.

In recent weeks, Stuart has been attempting to come to terms with his deteriorating health.

Back in December, 2021, Ricky Champ's character was devastated to find out he had been diagnosed with male breast cancer.

And after misleading his wife Rainie by first telling her his friend Sonia Fowler was the one to suffer from the illness, Stuart had been holding her at arm's length.

Speaking about the storyline, Ricky said: "I feel honoured to be trusted with such an important storyline.

"We will see Stuart really struggle with the fact he has cancer, and to learn that its breast cancer is really difficult for him to understand.

"I hope by shedding a light on male breast cancer, more men will be aware of it and seek out a doctor if they notice anything wrong."

EastEnders returns tonight on BBC One at 8pm

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