There has been mounting speculation that calcium antagonists may be useful in reducing or preventing brain damage after cardiopulmonary resuscitation. To test the clinical usefulness of these agents in averting such damage, high-dose verapamil was administered to baboons and pigs after partial cerebral ischemia for varying periods of time. In Group A baboons and pigs, the major aortic branches supplying the carotid and vertebral circulations were clamped for periods ranging from 15 to 150 minutes, and neurological recovery was observed. In Group B, verapamil hydrochloride 0.7 mg/kg was given by intravenous infusion after similar periods of arterial occlusion. The administration of verapamil did not lead to any clinically improved neurological outcome. The use of verapamil after prolonged periods of partial cerebral ischemia did not improve neurological recovery in baboons and pigs. © 1984.