The effect of low doses of prednisolone compared with placebo on function and on the hypothalamic pituitary adrenal axis in patients with rheumatoid arthritis

Rheumatol Rehabil. 1976 Feb;15(1):17-23. doi: 10.1093/rheumatology/15.1.17.


A double-blind trial of prednisolone in patients with rheumatoid arthritis using doses of zero, 3 mg and 5 mg is reported. Patients on a dose of 3 mg derived little sustained benefit but subjects on the higher dose showed some improvement which did not last more than two years. Mild suppression of the hypothalamo-pituitary-adrenal axis occurred in both steroid-treated groups.

Publication types

  • Clinical Trial
  • Controlled Clinical Trial

MeSH terms

  • Adrenal Glands / drug effects*
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Arthritis, Rheumatoid / drug therapy*
  • Clinical Trials as Topic
  • Dose-Response Relationship, Drug
  • Drug Evaluation
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Hypothalamus / drug effects*
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Movement
  • Muscle Contraction
  • Pituitary Gland / drug effects*
  • Placebos
  • Prednisolone / adverse effects
  • Prednisolone / therapeutic use*
  • Remission, Spontaneous
  • Time Factors


  • Placebos
  • Prednisolone