- National Resource Center on Lupus
- Understanding lupus
- Lupus remission
Lupus affects everyone differently. Some people with lupus eventually go into remission, while others never do.
What is remission?
Experts don’t agree on a single definition for lupus remission. A timeframe hasn’t been defined for what counts as lupus remission. Generally, remission means that your lupus symptoms (including arthritis, rashes, and other problems) and signs of lupus disease activity in your body, such as blood markers, go away for an extended time period.
If you have a lack of lupus symptoms, do not stop taking medications without speaking with your doctor first.
Will I go into remission?
Lupus is different for every person. Some people’s lupus symptoms don’t ever fully go away, or they often have flares. Others will have flares every few years (or even less often) and their lupus will be inactive the rest of the time.
While lupus remission isn’t possible for everyone, treatment can help most people with lupus have milder symptoms and fewer flares.
If you’ve recently been diagnosed with lupus, it may take months or years to figure out which treatments work best for you. But remember that remission could still be possible down the road, so it’s important to work with your doctor to find a treatment plan that’s right for you.
Do I still need to take my medicines if I go into remission?
Most people in lupus remission still take certain medicines, including hydroxychloroquine (Plaquenil®). But many people can start taking lower doses of other medicines, like steroids, and even stop taking some medicines completely.
If you’re in remission, talk to your doctor about which medicines you still need to take. To give yourself the best chance at staying in remission, it’s important to keep seeing your doctor regularly and taking your lupus medicines as prescribed — even if you don’t feel sick anymore.
If any of your lupus symptoms come back, tell your doctor right away.
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