The Public Health Agency of Canada adapted a Finnish diabetes screening tool (FINDRISC) to create a tool (CANRISK) tailored to Canada’s multi-ethnic population. CANRISK was developed using data collected in seven Canadian provinces. In an effort to extend the applicability of CANRISK to northern territorial populations, we completed a study with the mainly Inuit population in the Kitikmeot region of Nunavut.
We obtained CANRISK questionnaires, physical measures and blood samples from participants in five Nunavut communities in Kitikmeot. We used logistic regression to test model fit using the original CANRISK risk factors for dysglycemia (prediabetes and diabetes). Dysglycemia was assessed using fasting plasma glucose (FPG) alone and/or oral glucose tolerance test. We generated participants’ CANRISK scores to test the functioning of this tool in the Inuit population.
A total of 303 individuals participated in the study. Half were aged less than 45 years, two-thirds were female and 84% were Inuit. A total of 18% had prediabetes, and an additional 4% had undiagnosed diabetes. The odds of having dysglycemia rose exponentially with age, while the relationship with BMI was U-shaped. Compared with lab test results, using a cut-off point of 32 the CANRISK tool achieved a sensitivity of 61%, a specificity of 66%, a positive predictive value of 34% and an accuracy rate of 65%.
The CANRISK tool achieved a similar accuracy in detecting dysglycemia in this mainly Inuit population as it did in a multi-ethnic sample of Canadians. We found the CANRISK tool to be adaptable to the Kitikmeot region, and more generally to Nunavut.