High rates of hospitalisation for bronchiolitis in Inuit children on Baffin Island

Int J Circumpolar Health. 2001 Aug;60(3):375-9.


It has been suspected that Inuit Children on Baffin Island suffer from severe, recurrent episodes of bronchiolitis, but this has never been documented previously. This study is a retrospective chart review of children less than 48 months of age hospitalised at Baffin Regional Hospital, Nunavut with a diagnosis of bronchiolitis over a one year period. This study documented that the admission rate for bronchiolitis in the first year of life was 306 per 1000 infants on Baffin Island, with an intubation rate of 12.8% in admitted children. One quarter of the infants were born prematurely, and half had their first presentation for bronchiolitis at less than 3 months of age. Ten of the 78 cases (12.8%) were identified as having a positive test for C. trachomatis by EIA, and Respiratory syncytial Virus was identified in 14 of 50 (28%) of those tested. This study documents that bronchiolitis in Inuit children on Baffin Island is a serious health concern and needs to be studied further.

MeSH terms

  • Age Distribution
  • Arctic Regions
  • Bronchiolitis / epidemiology*
  • Bronchiolitis / microbiology*
  • Bronchiolitis / therapy
  • Canada / epidemiology
  • Child, Preschool
  • Female
  • Hospitalization / statistics & numerical data*
  • Humans
  • Incidence
  • Infant
  • Inuit / statistics & numerical data*
  • Male
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Risk Factors
  • Severity of Illness Index
  • Sex Distribution