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Int J Circumpolar Health. 2003;62 Suppl 1:3-79.

Inuit health in Greenland: a population survey of life style and disease in Greenland and among Inuit living in Denmark.

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  • 1National Institute of Public Health, Copenhagen, Denmark.


During 1997-2001 a population survey was carried out amongst Greenland Inuit living in Denmark and West Greenland (Nuuk, Sisimiut, Qasigiannguit and four villages in Uummannaq municipality). Data collection comprised an interview, a questionnaire, clinical examinations and sampling of biological specimens (blood, urine, subcutaneous fat tissue). The clinical examinations included anthropometric measurements, an oral glucose tolerance test, ECG, ultrasound of thyroid gland and carotid arteries, a skin prick test, and lung function. The data collection areas in Greenland ranged from the westernized capital of Nuuk (pop. app. 13,000) to small fishing and hunting villages (pop. app. 250). A total of 4,162 persons aged 18+ participated in the study; clinical examinations were performed on 2,056 of these, 739 from Denmark and 1317 from Greenland. Some of the above mentioned procedures were performed on a subset of the participants. The participation rate was 62%. We provide an overview of the background of the study and a detailed description of the methods employed for the data collection. A set of standard tables are provided for the indigenous population of Greenland. These cover statistics for selected variables by gender and ten-year age groups.

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