2020-07-17 16:37:59 UTC
Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg revealed Friday that her cancer has
returned and she is undergoing chemotherapy.
The 87-year-old released a statement detailing her illness after spending three
days in the hospital this week, which she said was not related.
She said she had been treated for the recurrence of lesions on her liver since
May 19. They had been diagnosed by a scan in February which was followed by a
biopsy, she said. She had been treated last August for a tumor on her pancreas.
The oldest member of the court said in the statement: 'I have often said I would
remain a member of the court as long as I can do the job full steam. I remain
fully able to do that.'
In her statement, Ginsburg said: 'On May 19, I began a course of chemotherapy
(gemcitabine) to treat a recurrence of cancer.
'A periodic scan in February followed by a biopsy revealed lesions on my liver.
My recent hospitalizations to remove gall stones and treat an infection were
unrelated to this recurrence.
'Immunotherapy first essayed proved unsuccessful. The chemotherapy course,
however, is yielding positive results. Satisfied that my treatment course is now
clear, I am providing this information.
'My most recent scan on July 7 indicated significant reduction of the liver
lesions and no new disease.
'I am tolerating chemotherapy well and am encouraged by the success of my
'I will continue bi-weekly chemotherapy to keep my cancer at bay, and am able to
maintain an active daily routine. Throughout, I have kept up with opinion
writing and all other Court work.'
In August 2019, the Supreme Court announced that Ginsburg had recently completed
three weeks of focused radiation treatment to ablate a tumor found in her
pancreas over the summer.
Ginsburg reported that she was cancer-free in January of this year. In May, she
underwent non-surgical treatment for a gallstone that had caused an infection.
The statement cam after the Supreme Court said Wednesday that Ginsburg was
discharged from a hospital after being treated for a possible infection.
A court spokeswoman said in an emailed statement that Ginsburg was 'home and
Ginsburg had gone to a hospital in Washington on Monday evening after
experiencing fever and chills.
She had a procedure at Johns Hopkins Hospital in Baltimore on Tuesday afternoon
to clean out a bile duct stent that was placed last August when she was treated
for a cancerous tumor on her pancreas.
The court said in a statement Tuesday that she would 'stay in the hospital for a
few days to receive intravenous antibiotic treatment.'
Ginsburg, a staunchly liberal vote on the court, was first evaluated at Sibley
Memorial Hospital in Washington DC on Monday night after experiencing fever and
Although the Supreme Court's summer recess officially began last week, the
justices worked into the wee hours of Tuesday, considering a request by the
federal government to allow federal executions to resume after a 17-year hiatus
- meaning she took part from her hospital bed.
The court issued its 5-4 ruling allowing federal executions to resume at
approximately 2am Tuesday. Ginsburg joined dissents by Justices Stephen Breyer
and Sonia Sotomayor.
Following the ruling, the federal government on Tuesday executed Daniel Lewis
Lee, who was convicted of murdering an Arkansas family in a 1990s plot to build
a whites-only nation in the Pacific Northwest.
The government then executed Wesley Ira Purkey on Wednesday for the killing of a
Kansas City teenager in 1998.