Objective: To determine the rates, causes and outcomes of non-diabetic end-stage renal disease (ESRD) among aboriginal and non-aboriginal people in Saskatchewan.
Design: Retrospective population-based study using data from the Canadian Organ Replacement Register.
Subjects: All patients with non-diabetic ESRD diagnosed between Jan. 1, 1981, and Dec. 31, 1990.
Main outcome measures: Age- and sex-specific as well as age-adjusted incidence rates of non-diabetic ESRD among aboriginal and non-aboriginal people in Saskatchewan, causes of non-diabetic ESRD, mortality rates, causes of death and renal transplantation rates.
Results: The 10-year incidence rates of non-diabetic ESRD were higher in all age groups among aboriginal people than among non-aboriginal people. The overall risk ratio for aboriginal people was 2.56. Aboriginal people experienced non-diabetic ESRD at an earlier age and were twice as likely to have a form of glomerulonephritis as a cause. Crude mortality rates, causes of death and transplantation rates were similar in the 2 populations, although we were unable to adjust these for differences in age.
Conclusion: Although diabetes is the most common cause of ESRD among aboriginal people in Saskatchewan, this population also experiences an excessive burden of non-diabetic ESRD, which is largely explained by a higher rate of glomerulonephritis.