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Ginsburg hospitalized overnight

UPDATE Thursday 4:10 p.m.  Justice Ginsburg worked at her home during the day Thursday, the Court reported this afternoon.


Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg spent a night in the hospital Wednesday after experiencing an “adverse reaction” to medication, the Supreme Court reported Thursday morning.  She had boarded a plane that was to take her to London where she and other members of the Court were to attend opening ceremonies this week for Britain’s new Supreme Court.

According to the Court’s statement: “Prior to the plane taking off, the Justice experienced extreme drowsiness causing her to fall from her seat.  Paramedics were called and the Justice was taken to the Washington Hospital Center as a precaution.”  After an examination, “she was found to be in stable health,” it added. Held overnight for observation, she was released Thursday morning, the statement said.

This marked the second time in recent days that the 76-year-old Justice was hospitalized after reacting to medication.  Late in September, she stayed overnight after feeling ill an hour after receiving an injection for an iron deficiency.  She returned to work the following day.

In Wednesday’s episode, the Court said Thursday, Justice Ginsburg experienced “an apparent adverse reaction to a sleeping aid combined with cold medication she took immediately after boarding” the overnight flight.  At the hospital later, “doctors attributed her symptoms to a reaction caused by the combination of a prescription sleeping aid and an over-the-counter cold medication,” the statement said.

Justice Stephen G. Breyer was also on the same fight, but he rescheduled after Justice Ginsburg had fallen ill.  He took a later flight.  Chief Justice John G. Roberts, Jr., and Justice Antonin Scalia are also attending the ceremonies in Britain.  Because of the time demands for flights and the schedule for the ceremonies, Justice Ginsburg’s hospital stay apparently will prevent her from attending.