Link: University of Iowa

Information About


Alumni Interview

Chester Winter, M.D.

Portrait: Chester Winter, M.D.

(43BA, 46MD)

What is your hometown?

Lamont, Iowa

What is your official title?

Professor Emeritus, Department of Urology, The Ohio State University

How/when did you become interested in science and medicine?

I became interested in medicine when I was in the eighth grade. I really admired a family physician, which sparked my interest.

What interested you to pursue a career in medicine and medical education?

Once my interest in medicine began, I was determined to become a physician. During residency, research projects led me to become an academic urologist. I was inspired by the faculty at UCLA, especially Dr. Willard Goodwin, who was a professor and the Chief of Urology. At UCLA I was fortunate to become associated with world-class researchers.

Please highlight your major career achievements, awards, discoveries, etc.

I was the co-inventor of Radioisotope Renography in 1955 and the inventor of Radioisotope Cystography in 1960. I have introduced surgical procedures to treat Priapism and female incontinence, both called the “Winter Procedure”, and have won prizes for nine essays and exhibits in Urology. I have received 11 honorary memberships and Memorial Lectures, as well as three lifetime achievement and service awards.

I have established and funded two endowments in Urology at The Ohio State University College of Medicine and my bibliography includes 147 medical articles, 26 book chapters, seven medical books, four medical movies, five American History books and 12 articles on genealogy. I also teach American and Ohio History at senior centers in Columbus, Ohio.

Is there a teacher, mentor or University of Iowa Carver College of Medicine faculty member who has helped shape your education?

Dr. Frank Peterson (18BS, 20MD), who was Chairman of the Department of Surgery was a great man. He had great surgical skill and was a wonderful person.

How or why did you choose the University of Iowa for your education and medical training?

It was primarily for financial reasons – I needed the scholarship they provided.

What kind of professional opportunities or advantages has your University of Iowa medical training provided?

The very best from an outstanding medical college, then and now.

Please describe your professional interests.

My interests have always been in research, teaching and innovation (I’ve always thought there was a better way of doing everything).

What are some of your outside interests?

I enjoy horticulture and spend a lot of time in the yard and flower gardens. I am an avid golfer, though I never got the chance to play in college because of studies. I have won ten tournaments (none major) and nine hole-in-one competitions. I have played 411 courses in the United States and 46 abroad. I really enjoy analyzing golf swings and problem situations. I still play three times weekly despite having had Parkinson’s Disease for six years. I follow my doctor’s advice and keep moving.

I played baseball and wrestled in high school but thereafter, my height and strength were not attributes. To put this in proper perspective, I never weighed more than 95 pounds in high school, 105 in college, 135 at the end of my medical residency and 145 ever since. I’m an enthusiastic Bridge player and enjoy photography, especially macro-photography. I like computers, especially word processing and the composition of documents. I enjoy financial investing (although don’t take my advice!) and visiting historic sites. I don’t care for politics or knitting.

Do you have an insight or philosophy that guides you in your professional work?

Treat others as you would like to be treated. Don’t downgrade people; he or she may become a Nobel Prize winner or champion of this or that.

If you could change one thing about the practice or business of medicine, what would it be?

Equality of opportunity and adequate quality in all of the benefits.

What is the biggest change you've experienced in medicine since you were a student?

The technology has changed dramatically, especially in radiology, lithotripsy, endoscopy and robotic surgery.

What one piece of advice would you give to today's medical students?

Be the patient’s advocate. Remember that they may be frightened, don’t know the proper questions to ask, don’t understand their options and may be confused and bewildered in the world of medicine.

What do you see as "the future" of the medicine?

Enormous technological advances with dehumanization in the interaction between physician and patient. We need medical school courses in ethics and need to teach students to always look at things from the patient’s point of view.

Contact

Medicine Alumni Society
medicine-alumni@uiowa.edu
Phone: 319-335-8886
Toll Free: 877-MEDIOWA
Fax: 319-384-1746