Volume 1193, Issue 1 p. 139-145

Early disease control by low-dose prednisone comedication may affect the quality of remission in patients with early rheumatoid arthritis

First published: 13 April 2010
Citations: 32
Address for correspondence: Roberto Caporali, Division of Rheumatology, University of Pavia, IRCCS S. Matteo Foundation, Piazzale Golgi, Pavia, Italy. [email protected]


In order to identify rate and stability of remission induced by low-dose prednisone comedication in early rheumatoid arthritis (RA), we evaluated patients with early RA (<1 year) who were randomized to receive (P) or not (non-P) low-dose prednisone in association with step-up disease-modifying antirheumatic drug therapy over 2 years. Prevalence and duration of clinical remission were evaluated in the first and second year. Each treatment group included 105 patients; no significant differences were found at baseline. During the first year, P patients achieved higher rates of clinical remission with a time-averaged odds ratio (OR) of 1.965 (CI 95% 1.214–3.182, P= 0.006). Moreover, they showed a higher probability of sustained remission during the second year (OR 4.480, CI 95% 1.354–14.817, P= 0.014). In conclusion, we found as in early RA low-dose prednisone comedication is associated with higher rate of clinical remission, earlier disease activity control and more stable remission over time.