I have never seen anything about
how long a flare typically lasts and I don't think that there is a "typical." I imagine that some people can get a flare under control in a week or two (if it's mild and they up their meds right away when they notice symptoms), but I've also heard of people flaring for years.
When I was diagnosed, my GI told me about
a patient of his who was diagnosed when he was 60 or so. Since he was in his late teens/early 20's, this guy would have periods of two to three weeks where he'd have severe bloody diarrhea that would clear up on it's own. Since it always went away, he never sought treatment, until he was 60-ish and he didn't get better. He was diagnosed with UC, and my GI figures he'd had it all that time. Sometimes UC can go into remission (and stay in remission for many years) all on it's own.
However, since I know that I have UC, I won't go off my meds. I believe in their ability to treat UC and have heard too many horror stories where people went off them, only to have a severe flare, and have the meds they used to treat no longer work.
Co-Moderator, UC Forum
Status: Remission since May 2009!
Symptoms began in November 2008, ~4 weeks after giving birth to my son
Diagnosed with pancolitis on 1/30/09
Meds: Apriso (4 0.375g pills ONCE!! daily), mesalamine enema twice weekly, Natural Factors Ultimate probiotic 12/12 Formula, multivitamin. Used prednisone (starting dose 40 mg) to get into remission.