Home and Away star Lynne McGranger has revealed she helped soap bosses develop her character Irene’s cancer storyline, as a tribute to a friend.

Irene Roberts is recovering from a battle against breast cancer and it has been revealed she is now set to suffer a heart scare. According to Digital Spy, Lynne asked for the new storyline to be written as her close friend, Nicky, had gone through the same thing.

Lynne told Australia’s TV Week: “Nicky got through the breast cancer, but then her heart gave out and she ended up with this really bad heart condition – and that became her thing to survive.

“And so when I talked about it to Cameron [Welsh], the producer, I said I would really like Irene to go down that journey – just to show people that it isn’t only about the breast cancer and that’s the end of the story.

“Often the chemo and the radiotherapy can lead to other conditions that never really leave the person.”

Irene’s heart problem will be discovered after she collapses on a sailing trip.

Lynne said: “She goes out on the boat and she feels amazing. She’s full of joie de vivre and the world is good.

“She’s got the all-clear and she’s out on the ocean, but too much exertion leads her to collapse. The exertion compounded with the medication and the chemotherapy leads to this heart condition.”

The scenes will screen next week in Australia, and on Channel 5 in February.