Memantine is an uncompetitive N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA) receptor antagonist. Unlike other NMDA antagonists, it has been used clinically for years for the treatment of Parkinson's disease, spasticity, and dementia without serious side effects. We aimed to investigate the therapeutic efficacy of memantine on a closed head trauma model. A total of 132 adult male Sprague-Dawley rats were randomly divided into four groups: sham-operated, control (closed head trauma), sham-vehicle (closed head trauma + saline), treatment (closed head trauma + memantine, 10 mg/kg, i.p.). A cranial impact was delivered to the skull, just in front of the coronal suture, over the left hemisphere, from the height of 7 cm. Saline or memantine were applied 15 min after trauma. Rats were euthanased 0.5, 1, 2, 6, 24, 48 h after trauma. Brain tissue samples were taken 5 mm away from the left frontal pole and also from the corresponding point of the contralateral hemispheres. Malondialdehyde activity (MDA) was considered to reflect the degree of lipid peroxidation. The MDA levels continued to increase for the first 2 h after the injury, then started to decrease gradually. Memantine treatment significantly reduced lipid peroxidation levels in the treatment group compared with other groups (P < 0.01). The findings of the present study indicate that memantine provides beneficial effects after closed head trauma in rats.