In cystic fibrosis jejunal hyperacidity has an adverse effect on lipid digestion. It is not known whether hyperacidity extends to the ileum. We have studied pH through the whole length of the small bowel in 42 normal and 6 cystic fibrosis subjects by means of pH-sensitive radiotelemetry capsules. In cystic fibrosis subjects the time spent below pH 6.0 was significantly greater during the 1st h in the small bowel than in normal subjects. In the rest of the small bowel the pH remained above 6.0 in both groups. The recordings in the cystic fibrosis group did not show the clear distinction between ileum and colon which is seen in normal subjects. In cystic fibrosis low pH conditions are confined to the proximal small intestine. There is adequate time at optimal pH in the small bowel for dissolution of enzyme supplements and assimilation of nutrients.