Known for her bright and bubbly personality, style maven Daisy Lewellyn, star of Bravo’s ‘Blood, Sweat and Heels,’ has passed away at the age of 36. According to Bravo, Lewellyn was battling a rare form of cancer, “…which was diagnosed after her makeup artists noticed an unusual coloring in her eyes. She was later diagnosed as having a cancerous tumor in her bile duct. She received treatment, including having the tumor removed as well as getting chemotherapy and radiation treatments. “I have cancer – cancer doesn’t have me. Every day comes with its challenges, but that doesn’t stop me from celebrating what I have in my life,” she said in March 2015. “I wanted to turn this tragedy into triumph by sharing my story in hopes that even one person could feel inspired.”
According to the American Cancer Society, cancer of the bile duct, is also known as Cholangiocarcinoma. The bile ducts are a series of thin tubes that reach from the liver to the small intestine. The major function of the bile ducts is to move a fluid called bile from the liver and gallbladder to the small intestine, where it helps digest the fats in food.
Bile duct cancer is not common. About 2,000 to 3,000 people in the United States develop bile duct cancer each year. Bile duct cancer is much more common in Southeast Asia, mostly because a parasitic infection that can cause bile duct cancer is much more common there. Bile duct cancer can occur at younger ages, but it is seen mainly in older people. Common risk factors can include being overweight or obese, smoking, pancreatitis, infection with HIV, exposure to asbestos, and exposure to radioactive chemicals, just to name some. It is unclear what contributed to Lewellyn’s diagnosis, but it is clear that she did not meet some of the normal risk factors, and contracted the disease at a very young age.
“I have cancer – cancer doesn’t have me. Every day comes with its challenges, but that doesn’t stop me from celebrating what I have in my life.” Lewellyn was well known in the industry, working for some high-profile publications including Essence, InStyle, and Glamour magazines.
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Above cover photo credit: Bravo TV