WASHINGTON (ABC News) – Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg was recently treated for a “localized malignant tumor” on her pancreas, a court spokesperson said Friday.
“The tumor was treated definitively and there is no evidence of disease elsewhere in the body,” the spokesperson said.
Ginsburg, 86, underwent surgery for colon cancer in 1999, and was later diagnosed with pancreatic cancer in March 2009.
The liberal justice, who has become a pop culture icon dubbed “the Notorious RBG” and a hero for young activists, dismissed concerns over her health in an interview with NPR in July, saying she is “very much alive.”
“There was a senator, I think it was after my pancreatic cancer, who announced with great glee that I was going to be dead within six months,” Ginsburg said. “That senator, whose name I have forgotten, is now himself dead, and I am very much alive.”
Progressives had been particularly concerned over Ginsburg’s health in recent years, fearing that if she can no longer serve or retires, this would give President Donald Trump the opportunity to nominate another conservative justice.
During his presidency, Trump has already appointed two justices to the court —Neil Gorsuch and Brett Kavanaugh.
The new tumor on her pancreas was detected after a routine blood test in early July and a biopsy on July 31 confirmed it was malignant, the court said.
A three-week course of radiation treatment at Sloan Kettering Cancer Center in New York City ended Friday. “The tumor was treated definitively” and, according to the court spokesperson, “no further treatment is needed at this time.”
The treatment caused her to cancel her annual summer visit to Sante Fe, the court said, but she had otherwise maintained “an active schedule.”