Vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) is known to be involved in the pathogenesis of rheumatoid arthritis (RA). In order to elucidate the association between VEGF levels and RA disease activity, VEGF concentrations were measured in RA patients at different phases and severity levels. Thirty-eight healthy subjects and 40 patients with RA were prospectively included in the study. Subjects were further categorized into four subgroups (high, moderate, low, or remission) using the disease activity score-28 (DAS28) scoring system. VEGF levels were significantly higher in patients than controls (p < 0.001). VEGF levels differed significantly in controls, early and late-phase RA patients (p = 0.002). A significant difference was found between controls and patients with high RA disease activity scores (p < 0.0001). VEGF levels were not correlated with age (r = -0.016; p = 0.921) or sex (r = 0.209; p = 0.921). VEGF values were correlated with erythrocyte sedimentation rate (r = 0.445; p = 0.004), but was not correlated with serum rheumatoid factor levels (r = -0.130; p = 0.424) in the patient group. In conclusion, higher VEGF levels are associated with late phase and high disease activity in RA, independent of age and sex.