The well-being of 86-year-old Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg has been a topic of concern for many Americans over the past couple of years, and the subject came to the forefront once again recently following a new revelation about her health struggles.
The high court revealed in a statement on Friday that Ginsburg just completed a course of radiation treatment for pancreatic cancer after a tumor was discovered during a routine check-up.
The Supreme Court announced on Aug. 23 that Ginsburg “today completed a three-week course of stereotactic ablative radiation therapy at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center in New York City.”
The press release noted that Ginsburg’s outpatient radiation treatment began on Aug. 5, and stemmed from the discovery of a malignant tumor on the jurist’s pancreas during a routine blood test administered in early July. A biopsy performed at Sloan Kettering on July 31 confirmed the grim news of pancreatic cancer.
Ginsburg reportedly “tolerated treatment well,” and also received a stent in her bile duct as a precautionary part of her treatment.
The release further indicated that, aside from being forced to skip an annual summer visit to Santa Fe, New Mexico, Ginsburg’s cancer treatment had not otherwise interfered with her notoriously active schedule.
“The tumor was treated definitively and there is no evidence of disease elsewhere in the body. Justice Ginsburg will continue to have periodic blood tests and scans. No further treatment is needed at this time,” the statement added.
Recurring struggles with cancer
Fox News reported that this is actually Ginsburg’s fourth battle with cancer over the past 20 years, and her second bout within less than a year.
In December 2018, Ginsburg underwent lung surgery to have cancerous nodules removed that were discovered after she fell and fractured several ribs in November. The recovery from that surgery forced Ginsburg to miss oral arguments at the Supreme Court for the first time ever since joining the court in 1993.
Prior to that, Ginsburg received treatment in 1999 for colorectal cancer, as well as for pancreatic cancer in 2009.
Despite her advancing age and multiple struggles with cancer, sources close to Ginsburg told Fox that the elderly jurist has no plans to step down from the court any time soon and instead intends to continue serving on the bench for as long as she feels capable of doing the job.
Whether anyone likes it or not, the day of Ginsburg’s retirement will eventually come, and there is little doubt that there will be a partisan battle for the ages over who will be selected to fill the resulting vacancy on the high court.