Doctors said my healthy 25-year-old brother’s heart palpitations were anxiety – the next day our parents found him dead

A MAN suffering from heart palpitations was found dead by his parents just a day after doctors diagnosed him with anxiety.

Ben Peters, 25, was a healthy, enthusiastic footballer from Manchester when he died suddenly.

Football fan Ben Peters died suddenly of heart problems last year


Football fan Ben Peters died suddenly of heart problems last yearCredit: MEN Media
The 25-year-old was in the prime of his life when tragedy struck


The 25-year-old was in the prime of his life when tragedy struckCredit: MEN Media
Ben pictured with his mother Anna and brother Michael


Ben pictured with his mother Anna and brother MichaelCredit: MEN Media

The man had just graduated as a lawyer and ran a local football team, Cheadle Atlas.

However, one evening in November last year, he suffered from chest pains and was short of breath.

He checked into the emergency room but left after doctors allegedly claimed his symptoms could be anxiety or gastrointestinal inflammation as all his tests came back clean.

The next morning, November 12, he was dead.

Michael, Ben’s brother, told Manchester Evening News the tragedy came as a shock.

He said: “It was Friday night, around midnight, Ben was experiencing severe chest pains, breathing rapidly in and out and suffering from severe shortness of breath.”

“I called my mum and dad and Ben went to the emergency room at Manchester Royal Infirmary.

“He had a whole series of tests and none of them showed anything was wrong.”

“The doctors simply attributed his symptoms to an anxiety disorder or gastroenteritis because he was incredibly tense and had palpitations.”

After Ben was released, the 25-year-old returned to his parents’ house for the rest of the day and spent the night there.

The next morning, his father experienced a nightmare.

Michael said: “My dad was the first to wake up and noticed the light was still on and went to check on Ben who had been sleeping on the sofa.”

“He found Ben, he was dead.”

The sudden death was devastating for his family. However, Michael believed that the medical staff had done everything in their power to examine Ben.

Michael said, “Ben’s electrocardiogram (ECG) was normal, his X-ray was fine.”

“Medics are looking for the most likely cause and there just wasn’t anything they thought was a problem, they can’t examine every single possible detail.”

“Really, it was just very unfortunate circumstances and timing.”

“It was nobody’s fault.”

An investigation was launched after the shock death.

In early May, the inquest found Ben had died of a fatal aortic dissection.

The symptoms of such a tear are severe chest pain and can lead to sudden death.

Michael said: “The examination revealed that Ben had a catastrophic hemorrhage from his aorta.

“There was a tear in his heart that grew and eventually severed completely, killing him.”

The brother admitted his family struggled with the loss but were also overwhelmed by the support they received.

It also prompted her to have her own heart checked.

Ben’s immediate family, including his two brothers Harry and Michael, mother Anna and father Stephen, underwent MRI scans, EKGs and echocardiograms.

The tests revealed that Stephen had the same susceptibility, which is why he will now have to undergo open-heart surgery in June.

On July 8th, Ben’s family will host a benefit football game at Cheadle football ground to raise awareness of breast-related health issues.

Michael said, “We’re trying to raise money for CRY, which has been a real, tremendous help.”

“Ben was incredibly enthusiastic, he was a really great brother to me, he was only a year over me and he taught me a lot about life.”

“We all miss Ben every day, he was my best friend.

“It’s very hard to endure life without him.”

A spokesman for Manchester University NHS Foundation Trust, which runs the Manchester Royal Infirmary, said: “We would like to express our sincere condolences to Ben’s family for their loss.”

“Unfortunately, this tragic condition is not always recognized during routine investigations and Ben’s circumstances were truly unfortunate.”

“We fully support Ben’s family and friends in raising awareness of heart risk among young people.”

CRY offers subsidized ECG and echocardiogram screening to all young people between the ages of 14 and 35.

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An EKG is an easy way to diagnose most heart abnormalities.

The results should be read by a cardiologist. An echocardiogram can also be created to provide clarity.

Ben, centre, pictured with his brothers Harry and Michael and father Stephen


Ben, centre, pictured with his brothers Harry and Michael and father StephenCredit: MEN Media

Zack Zwiezen

Zack Zwiezen is a USTimesPost U.S. News Reporter based in London. His focus is on U.S. politics and the environment. He has covered climate change extensively, as well as healthcare and crime. Zack Zwiezen joined USTimesPost in 2023 from the Daily Express and previously worked for Chemist and Druggist and the Jewish Chronicle. He is a graduate of Cambridge University. Languages: English. You can get in touch with me by emailing

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