Children with cystic fibrosis (CF) undergo repeated invasive medical procedures. This article summarises a survey of the use of nitrous oxide to minimise the psychological trauma and pain that was undertaken within the paediatric unit of a district general hospital (Williams et al 2004). Pain levels pre and post procedure, whether the treatment was effective, any adverse effects and comments by children and carers were recorded. Nitrous oxide was safe and effective in reducing pain, trauma and 'needle phobia'. It is now being offered to other children in the management of procedural pain.