Aspects of early arthritis. Definition of disease states in early arthritis: remission versus minimal disease activity

Arthritis Res Ther. 2006;8(4):216. doi: 10.1186/ar1983.


With regard to rheumatoid arthritis, remission as currently used in the literature can have two meanings: either a state with persistent absence of clinical and radiological signs of disease activity without being treated for a specific time period, or it may point to a disease state with minimal disease activity during antirheumatic treatment. A risk factor for the first is absence of autoantibodies, with the anti-CCP-antibodies as best predictors, whereas risk factors for achieving a drug-induced state of minimal disease activity are not well defined. These definitions of remission refer to different disease states; therefore, we propose that the term remission is reserved for patients that are not treated with antirheumatic drugs.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Arthritis / classification
  • Arthritis / complications
  • Arthritis / diagnostic imaging
  • Arthritis / physiopathology*
  • Arthritis, Rheumatoid / classification
  • Arthritis, Rheumatoid / complications
  • Arthritis, Rheumatoid / diagnostic imaging
  • Arthritis, Rheumatoid / physiopathology*
  • Arthrography
  • Cardiovascular Diseases / etiology
  • Cardiovascular Diseases / mortality
  • Comorbidity
  • Disabled Persons
  • Disease Progression
  • Humans
  • Lymphoma, Non-Hodgkin / etiology
  • Registries
  • Remission Induction