Politics

Supreme Court says Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg underwent 'non-surgical' treatment for gallbladder condition

Key Points
  • The Supreme Court on Tuesday said that Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg underwent non-surgical treatment for a benign gallbladder condition.
  • Bader was treated at Johns Hopkins hospital in Baltimore and is resting comfortably and plans to take part in Wednesday's teleconference arguments, the court said.
Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg speaks onstage at the Fourth Annual Berggruen Prize Gala.
Eugene Gologursky

Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg was hospitalized Tuesday with an infection caused by a gallstone, but plans to take part in the court's arguments by telephone Wednesday, the Supreme Court said.

The 87-year-old justice underwent non-surgical treatment for what the court described as acute cholecystitis, a benign gall bladder condition, at Johns Hopkins Hospital in Baltimore, Maryland.

She is resting comfortably and expects to be in the hospital for a day or two, the court said.

Ginsburg took part in the court's telephone arguments Monday and Tuesday. She initially sought medical care Monday, when the gallstone was first diagnosed.

She has been treated four times for cancer, most recently in August, when she underwent radiation for a tumor on her pancreas.

Her most recent hospital stay was in November, when she spent two nights at Johns Hopkins Hospital with a likely infection after suffering from chills and fever.

The frail-looking liberal icon also bounced back from lung surgery to remove cancerous growths in December 2018. Her recovery from that surgery forced her to miss court arguments for the first time since she became a justice in 1993, appointed by President Bill Clinton.

She has been doing her usual workout with a personal trainer at the court, even as the justices have canceled courtroom arguments in favor of telephone sessions because of the coronavirus pandemic.

Ginsburg has said she would like to serve until she's 90, if her health allows.

Full statement from the Supreme Court:

"Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg underwent non-surgical treatment for acute cholecystitis, a benign gallbladder condition, this afternoon at Johns Hopkins Hospital in Baltimore, Maryland. Following oral arguments on Monday, the Justice underwent outpatient tests at Sibley Memorial Hospital in Washington, D.C., that confirmed she was suffering from a gallstone that had migrated to her cystic duct, blocking it and causing an infection. The Justice is resting comfortably and plans to participate in the oral argument teleconference tomorrow morning remotely from the hospital. She expects to stay in the hospital for a day or two."

CNBC contributed to this story

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