Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg has undergone radiation treatment for a malignant tumor, according to a statement from the Supreme Court. According to the statement, Ginsburg “completed a three-week course of stereotactic ablative radiation therapy at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center in New York City” on Friday.
The focused radiation treatment began on August 5 and was administered on an outpatient basis to treat a tumor on her pancreas. The abnormality was first detected after a routine blood test in early July, and a biopsy performed on July 31 at Sloan Kettering confirmed a localized malignant tumor. As part of her treatment, a bile duct stent was placed. The Justice tolerated treatment well. She cancelled her annual summer visit to Santa Fe, but has otherwise maintained an active schedule.
The tumor was reportedly treated “definitively” and there is “no evidence of disease elsewhere” in her body. The 86-year-old justice “will continue to have periodic blood tests and scans.” At this time, she requires no further treatment.
This is the second major procedure she’s had to treat cancer in the past year. In December, Ginsburg had surgery to remove two malignant nodules from her left lung. Ginsburg’s surgeon said at the time that “there was no evidence of any remaining disease” and “scans performed before surgery indicated no evidence of disease elsewhere in the body.” She’s been treated for cancer two prior times. In 1999 she was treated for colorectal cancer, and then pancreatic cancer in 2009.
Ginsburg was nominated and confirmed to the court in 1993, becoming the second woman on the Supreme Court, and has been a reliable liberal voice on the court. However, she did recently make headlines for defending Trump nominee Brett Kavanaugh.
Matt Margolis is the author of Trumping Obama: How President Trump Saved Us From Barack Obama’s Legacy and the bestselling book The Worst President in History: The Legacy of Barack Obama. You can follow Matt on Twitter @MattMargolis