Baby bottles are often made of polycarbonate plastic. Impurities remaining in the bottle from the monomer bisphenol A can migrate from the plastic bottles into baby food, thereby causing a health concern. Previous migration testing of new baby bottles showed only trace migration levels of the substance. In the present work, polycarbonate baby bottles were subjected to simulated use by dishwashing, boiling and brushing. Migration testing performed with both new and used bottles revealed a significant increase in migration of bisphenol A due to use. This finding might be explained by polymer degradation. Bisphenol A was determined in 200-ml samples of water food simulant by a method based on solid-phase extraction followed by gas chromatography coupled with mass spectrometry. The detection limit was 0.1 microg l(-1). Twelve different polycarbonate baby bottles were tested by filling them with hot water (100 degrees C) for 1 h. The mean bisphenol A level from new bottles was 0.23 + -0.12 microg l(-1), while the mean levels from bottles subjected to simulated use were 8.4 + -4 microg l(-1) (dishwashed 51 times) and 6.7 + -4 microg l(-1) (dishwashed 169 times), respectively. None of the bottles released bisphenol A at levels that exceed the recently established provisional tolerable daily intake (0.01 mg kg(-1) body weight/day) in the European Union.