Calcium antagonists are effective antianginal agents in the treatment of patients with stable exercise-induced angina pectoris. A series of randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled studies with the novel, once-daily calcium antagonist amlodipine have been completed in a large number of patients with stable exercise-induced angina pectoris. Compared with placebo, once-daily amlodipine demonstrated a significant dose-related extension in exercise duration and workload accomplished, and reduction in number of anginal attacks and associated glyceryl trinitrate consumption. The clinical antianginal attributes of amlodipine were accompanied by significant reductions in electrocardiographic evidence of myocardial ischemia. In comparison with other antianginal drugs, once-daily amlodipine at a dosage range of 5-10 mg demonstrated antianginal activity comparable to thrice-daily diltiazem and once-daily nadolol. Amlodipine administered once daily achieves symptomatic and electrocardiographic amelioration of myocardial ischemic episodes induced by exercise in the majority of patients with stable angina pectoris. Amlodipine does not depress left ventricular pumping activity, and its side-effect profile does not differ substantially from that of placebo.