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One year ago: Dr. Antonio De la Cruz

July 31, 2010 |  7:00 am

De-la-cruz Conservative radio talk-show host Rush Limbaugh credited Dr. Antonio De la Cruz with saving his career.

De la Cruz, a renowned neurotologist at the House Ear Clinic who died one year ago, performed cochlear implant surgery on Limbaugh in 2001, restoring the talk-show host's hearing, which had rapidly worsened due to an autoimmune inner-ear disease.

"I wouldn't have been able to continue my career," Limbaugh said. "For a month before I had the implant surgery, I did my show totally deaf."

As director of education at the House Ear Institute, De la Cruz led professional training programs for hundreds of visiting physicians in otology/neurotology surgical procedures and practices.

Fluent not only in English and Spanish but also in French, Italian, Portuguese and other languages, he frequently lectured and taught around the world.

De la Cruz served as president of the American Academy of Surgery in 1997 and 1998 and received the academy's presidential citation in 2004 and its Distinguished Service Award in 2007.

For more, read Dr. Antonio De la Cruz's obituary by The Times.

-- Michael Farr

Photo: Antonio De la Cruz. Credit: House Ear Institute