Ruth Bader Ginsburg announces she is undergoing chemotherapy for a 'reoccurrence of cancer,' can still perform Supreme Court duties

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Ruth Bader Ginsburg announces she is undergoing chemotherapy for a 'reoccurrence of cancer,' can still perform Supreme Court duties
U.S. Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg participates in a discussion at the Georgetown University Law Center on February 10, 2020.Sarah Silbiger/Getty Images
  • Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg announced Friday that she was undergoing chemotherapy treatments to combat a "reoccurrence of cancer."
  • The 87-year-old had recently been hospitalized for an infection stemming from a medical procedure on a tumor found on her pancreas.
  • "I am tolerating chemotherapy well and am encouraged by the success of my current treatment," Ginsburg said in a statement.
  • "I will continue bi-weekly chemotherapy to keep my cancer at bay, and am able to maintain an active daily routine," the statement said. "Throughout, I have kept up with opinion writing and all other Court work."

Following another recent heath scare, Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg announced Friday that she was undergoing chemotherapy to treat a "reoccurrence of cancer."

Ginsburg, 87, has survived cancer four times before.

On Wednesday she was released from the hospital after getting treatment for an infection stemming from an operation on a tumor on her pancreas.

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"On May 19, I began a course of chemotherapy (gemcitabine) to treat a recurrence of cancer," Ginsburg said in the statement. "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."

But Ginsburg said the development did not mean she would be stepping down from the bench.

"I am tolerating chemotherapy well and am encouraged by the success of my current treatment," Ginsburg's statement said. "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."

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"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," she added.

In May, Ginsburg was hospitalized for that gallbladder condition, raising concerns about her ability to stay on the bench. She still conducted oral arguments and court business from the hospital.

Beyond being treated for the tumor on her pancreas last year, she was previously treated for colorectal cancer in 1999 and pancreatic cancer in 2009. She had lung surgery to remove cancerous growths in December 2018.

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