Myth: PMR lasts only two years
A discussion from Dr Sarah Mackie’s PMR Voices project was about the misinformation surrounding PMR and specifically what is known as the “two-year-myth”. We often hear from patients that
they have been told they will be off steroid treatment in two years.
Fact: PMR has not set timescale
Some people will recover from PMR within two years. But this is not the case for everyone. We have many members who have had PMR for several years. There are also different studies that show it takes longer to resolve.
An American study suggests that half of people with PMR stopped taking steroids after six years.
A UK study suggests that half of people stopped taking steroids within two years but that a quarter were still taking steroids after four years.
There are an estimated 225,000 people in the UK with PMR. Based on the UK study, we would expect 56,000 of them to still be taking steroids after four years.
If you are diagnosed with PMR you may recover within two years but it may well take longer. This does not mean that you are doing anything wrong or that your PMR is “breaking the rules”. It has its own timescale because everybody is individual.
If you have any concerns, always discuss them with your clinician.