WASHINGTON — Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg of the Supreme Court was hospitalized on Thursday morning, with three broken ribs after falling in her office Wednesday evening, a spokeswoman said.
Justice Ginsburg, 85, went home after her fall, but experienced discomfort over the night. She was admitted to George Washington University Hospital, where doctors found three broken ribs on her left side, Kathy Arberg, a Supreme Court spokeswoman, said in a statement.
The next sitting of the Supreme Court begins on Nov. 26, and Justice Ginsburg’s history suggests the injuries are not likely to keep her away. She broke two ribs in 2012, without missing work. And she returned to work quickly after undergoing a heart procedure in 2012. She is also a cancer survivor and returned to work less than three weeks after having surgery.
Even as Justice Ginsburg has shown she bounces back quickly from health setbacks, liberals have become jittery about how much more time she will be able to serve, particularly with the balance of the Supreme Court shifting to the right because of President Trump’s appointment of two conservative justices.
Broken ribs are usually painful, and could puncture the lung, depending on the specifics of the break. Ms. Arberg, the court’s spokeswoman, did not provide additional details about how Justice Ginsburg fell on Wednesday or whether she fell because of another medical condition. Broken ribs typically take six weeks to heal, but it varies from case to case.
By midmorning, Mr. Trump had not publicly commented on Justice Ginsburg’s hospitalization. The president was at the Supreme Court Thursday morning for a ceremony for Justice Brett M. Kavanaugh who was sworn in last month.
Justice Ginsburg was appointed in 1993 and is the oldest justice on the panel. She has said that she will stay for as long as she is healthy and mentally sharp.
Originally from New York, Justice Ginsburg is known for her lifetime of work fighting for women’s rights and gained social media popularity in recent years with her own meme and nickname, “Notorious R.B.G.” She was the subject of a documentary over the summer, and Hollywood is making a movie from her life story.