Monday, October 27, 2008 freckles1955, Community Member, asks

Q: Does everyone always go into remission?

Answer This
Answers (8)
Sara Nash, Health Guide
10/27/08 11:24am

That's the goal!  RA can be very different for everyone, so there is no guarantee for sure, but the new medications that are out there now have definitely increased the number of people who are in remission or are able to manage their RA very well. 


Finding a treatment plan that works for you, which could include a comibination of medicines and/or other forms of care including diet, acupuncture, yoga, etc. can all work together to give us each the best possible chance of reaching remission, and getting started on that plan as close to diagnosis as possible also increases the chances for remission.


Good luck,


Carol, Community Member
10/27/08 12:24pm

From what I have been reading 50% of us should be able to go into remission.  He is a quote from


Sound too good to be true? It's not, says Désirée van der Heijde, MD, a professor of rheumatology at the University Hospital Maastricht in the Netherlands. She says with today's newer treatments, as well as with more aggressive use of older treatments, like methotrexate, nearly half of people with RA can - and should - achieve remission. In the Trial of Etanercept and Methotrexate with Radiographic Patient Outcomes (TEMPO), a two-year study of 682 people with RA from 92 treatment centers in Europe and Australia, more than three quarters of people treated with the biologic drug etanercept (Enbrel) plus the disease-modifying antirheumatic drug (DMARD) methotrexate experienced no progression of joint damage at three years. More than 40 percent achieved clinical remission.

madilisa, Community Member
9/24/09 1:11pm

I believe that other drugs and yoga, acupuncture, meditation and rethinking relationships can help too.  Enbrel and Humira both have devastating side effects  ( why do you think they won't let you have a "live vaccine" like shingles vaccine if you are on them?) I believe these biologics caused my 8 week infection in my sinuses and chest that I am still battling.  Just couldn't seem to shake the infection even though I stopped the Humira immediately when I got sick.    I am not happy that these drugs are so highly touted when they open you up to multiple infections by lowering the immune system.   I guess if someone wants to brag about their RA being in remission while they are sick with a number of other infections that are running them down, that's their choice.   Also, the entire time I was on them I felt like I was speeding through life and some kind of super uberperson and I was gaining a lot of weight too. They gave me a real false sense of well being because the one thing they do for sure is they are good at stopping pain.   I think that methotrexate is safer.  I also am starting hydroxychloroquine as I've heard it brings down swelling and can help lower cholesterol too.  

Some drugs have been around a lot longer and are proven.  But the pharmaceutical companies have a way of getting on tv every night and touting how great the newer biologics are. ( $1000 a shot!!!)  They even show people with tennis rackets.  I want you to think real hard about how many people with RA you know who play tennis. 

That said, I'm not jumping onto the Humira/Enbrel/Remicade whatever wagon again until they are proven to be "the cure" for RA.

01titansfan, Community Member
9/24/09 5:49pm

I agree with one thing you said, the biologics are good at taking away pain. As far as going through life speeding around like an uberperson, I'll take it! When you're a single mother with no one else to count on but yourself, you need to do everything you can possibly do to get through life for your children. I can handle a sinus infection for a week verus not being able to walk or get out of bed to support your children. When you are the only one who can support yourself and your family, you do ANYTHING & EVERYTHING you can possibly do to make that happen!

 MTX made me so sick that I could not go to work, so that was out, & it also has a lot of side effects! The hydroxychloroquine has the least side effects but also doesn't work as well for most people.

  When I was on Humira I lost weight (50 lbs.)! I think it had a lot to do with the fact of being more active. When you actually feel good enough to get out of bed & act like a normal person for a change, you are able to physically move around & do things you were not use to doing. It felt GREAT! It was the first time in a very long time that I felt so good. Now that I'm off of it, I feel like crap again! Believe me, there is no amount of acupunture or meditation in the world that can make me able to do yoga when I feel like this! When your RA symptoms are as bad as mine are right now, I have to have the Humira to even think about yoga!

Carol, Community Member
10/28/08 1:48pm

There is also a article about obesity and remission.  It says "Obesity Can Reduce Chance of RA Remission. But Remicade may act on the inflammatory mediator that is produced by fat tissue, helping push even obese people into remission."

Valerie, Community Member
10/29/08 12:45pm

I honestly hope that everyone with RA goes into remission at least once so you can feel what it's like to be "normal" again.


I went into remission after being on Enbrel for one year.  The remission lasted almost two years.

Annie, Community Member
11/26/10 7:05am



I hope you are feeling OK.  I am contacting you regarding remission and how it is diagnosed.  My daughter is about to start on Humira and she is trying to eliminate foods that we think cause inflammation.  Assuming that CRP and ESR go down, wouldn't her doctors keep her on Humira as they can see it is working or do they take you off it after say 3 months of normal blood tests?  I do not want her on that drug at all never mind 3 months!  Does remission come and go and then you have to go back on the drug for another period?


Have you heard of Low Dose Naltrexone? Google it! 



mccoy, Community Member
9/24/09 12:11pm

REMISSION  Sometimes it comes and goes, ebbs and flows like the tide.  Enjoy the good days, weeks, months or years while you can. Stay on you meds, no matter how well you feel and don't miss any doses, just remember it is always lurking and waiting.  Stress and strong low weather fronts can be triggers for flair-ups, usually pass and are managable while on medications.

stramber, Community Member
9/24/09 9:05pm

Not for me as yet have had RA for 33 yrs  !!


I don't believe the scientists and drug companies know enough about RA to get the correct drugs as yet.


Gene technology and stem cells I believe is the way forward for drugs that will properly address the RA without the side effects we have today.

Debi, Community Member
9/28/09 11:21am

No everyone does not go in remission. I never have in 27 years. But we finally have control of it with the right kind  of medicine and my flareups I barely notice just feel a little achy and tired. I also have new feet and new kness and ankles that got me out of the wheelchair.

But I hope everyone goes in remission.


MariAnne, Community Member
1/13/10 11:52pm

My husband of 31 years was diagnosed with RA, 14 years ago. He definitely had all the symptoms then. The knees, hands, feet, and nodules were very painful. It took about a year before all the symptons went away. He was in remission all these years,( 13 years) until recently about 2 months ago he's had a flareup! Is it possible to have a remission again these many years or longer?

Answer This

We hope you find this general health information helpful. Please note however, that this Q&A is meant to support not replace the professional medical advice you receive from your doctor. No information in the Answers above is intended to diagnose or treat any condition. The views expressed in the Answers above belong to the individuals who posted them and do not necessarily reflect the views of Remedy Health Media. Remedy Health Media does not review or edit content posted by our community members, but reserves the right to remove any material it deems inappropriate.

By freckles1955, Community Member— Last Modified: 06/19/12, First Published: 10/27/08