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The Age of Autism: Mercury, Medicine, and a Man-Made Epidemic Hardcover – September 14, 2010

4.3 out of 5 stars 56 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From Booklist

To be clear, Blaxill and Olmsted state upfront that they support vaccination. What they do not support is mainstream science’s explanation of the cause and history of autism. Carefully laying groundwork for their hypothesis, they trace the origins of other illnesses that, if not directly caused by human hands, were worsened by them. One case in point: syphilis was once treated with mercury, which resulted in a type of madness thought to be another symptom of the disease, but instead was found to be mercury poisoning. Additionally they trace mercury poisoning as the basis of other illnesses before concluding that mercury plays a part in what may likely be multiple causes of autism. In this they relate a history of the discovery of autism and tie the disorder’s recent ascendancy to increased environmental toxins, most specifically mercury. These two iconoclasts, one the father of a child with autism, lay out credible investigative evidence in support of their theory even if it does fly in the face of what they feel is the medical industry’s current cant. --Donna Chavez


“Olmsted and Blaxill’s devastating account shows how medical and manufacturing interests have mounted an assault on human health for decades and covered their tracks along the way.  The Age of Autism is only the latest episode in centuries of crimes against nature but is in many ways the most troubling.  Autistic children are the canaries in the coal mine; shame on all of us if we don’t heed their distress call.”- Robert F. Kennedy, Jr.

“The Age of Autism lays out disturbing evidence that mercury from many sources is a major factor in the rise of this tragic epidemic. And vaccines are by no means off the hook.  One wonders why doctors who gave children multiple vaccinations loaded with the neurotoxin thimerosal (mercury) didn’t also hand the kids a pack of cigarettes. Make sure your doctor sees a copy of this timely book.”-Dierdre Imus

 “A fascinating read that shatters many myths of the very real autism epidemic that is happening before our eyes.   Every parent will benefit from Olmsted and Blaxill’s well-researched story of the environmental factors contributing to autism, and perhaps leave with ideas for how to start recovering their child today.”|-Jenny McCarthy, author of LOUDER THAN WORDS:  A Mother’s Journey in Healing Autism

 “A fascinating medical detective story that should change the way we think about and investigate environmental toxins and neurological disease.  Advocates for the autistic will be both dismayed and gratified, and the rest of us will be unsettled, by this thorough historical and scientific account.”--Gary Greenberg, author of MANUFACTURING DEPRESSION

“THE AGE OF AUTISM is an exquisitely reported examination of not just autism but the silent role mercury has played in epidemics from syphilis-related insanity to Freud’s female hysterics to escalating rates of autoimmune diseases including Crohn’s.  Olmsted and Blaxill drill deep into evidence that will shock you, anger you, and leave you with one burning question: why are we still allowing mercury to poison our world, our children, ourselves?”
 -Donna Jackson Nakazawa, author of THE AUTOIMMUNE EPIDEMIC


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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 448 pages
  • Publisher: Thomas Dunne Books (September 14, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0312545622
  • ISBN-13: 978-0312545628
  • Product Dimensions: 6.3 x 1.5 x 9.9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.4 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (56 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #722,564 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Erik Gfesser VINE VOICE on January 15, 2011
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
The content of this book is a bit different than what this reviewer had expected. Much of the material presented here can actually be read apart from what the authors discuss about autism, even though autism is one of the core elements in some areas of the text, comprising perhaps about one-third of the book. In reading some of the reviews here, as well as the great amount of comments that have been submitted in response to these reviews, it is rather apparent that some have not actually read this book (the reader of this review can rest assured that this reviewer has read the entire content before submitting this review), so this review was submitted with the goal of addressing these, even though it is difficult to review a book of this nature in just a couple paragraphs.

As the authors discuss in their introduction, the intention was to investigate the natural history of the autism disorder, beginning with the original landmark 1943 report by Johns Hopkins psychiatrist Leo Kanner on 11 children born in the 1930s. While traditional researchers often state that autism rates consist of only a handful per 10 thousand individuals, and that this rate has existed for quite some time and is common, the authors state that autism was newly discovered in the 1930s because it was new and did not exist in previous generations. In reading the account of Kanner, the presentation that the authors provide is compelling. If individuals have had this disorder at a natural rate for hundreds, if not thousands, of years, why would its existence not have been documented?

In the opinion of this reviewer, one of the best aspects of this book is the fact that the authors research each of the 11 individual cases reported by Kanner.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I almost dreaded reading Age of Autism because I thought it would give me the same information that many other autism books do about environmental toxicity, weakened immune systems and the need for chelation, nutritional supplements, healthy diets, etc. In an effort to educate myself about my children's conditions and the rising tide of autism in this country, I added Age of Autism to the growing list of autism books on my shelf.

To my pleasant surprise, the book is not about autism treatment and it is not an "anti vaccine" book. I almost think the title should be changed so as not to chase readers away with the autism label. This is a must-read book for all!

From the very beginning the book is readable. The research is interesting and not overwhelming with too many numbers or overly complicated scientific terms. It is written for the lay person.

Who would have thought that one could be so enthralled by the history of mercury?

If you care about the environment, if you care about your children, if you care about the rise in developmental delays, Alzheimers, allergies, asthma and cancer, this book is a must read.

I have never written a book review before. I feel passionate that this book could change lives and the medical discourse in this country if people would read, research and pay attention to what is happening to our children.
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Format: Hardcover
Excellent through research! I really learned much about how mercury has been used in medicine over the centuries and the illnesses it has caused. A very interesting section about Freud was totally unexpected, but revealing. Also, I didn't know how foundational Dr. Bernard Rimland was in the early truth in autism movement.

Anyone who claims autism disorders are not caused by environment (including vaccinations) should read this well researched and throughly documented book written in plain easy to understand English.
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Format: Paperback
I loved this book. While the title is a bit misleading, it does make sense in the end.
As a physician and environmental specialist, I loved reading about the unraveling of medical and industrial "advancement" and how it has contributed to our own demise. It was fascinating to read about tertiary syphillis and it being a man made outcome of treatment with mercury.
This is the only explanations which makes any sense and yet, I never heard this in medical training.
I dare anyone to read this with open eyes and not come away enlightened.
I recommend following this book with "Dissolving Illusions", a new book also using published governmental documents to get the reader thinking about medical history and how it's been rewritten to justify failed treatments
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Some said before in these opinions that this book tries to save the world. In addition to that, I would say that our existence on earth depends on how we will contamine our enviroment in the near future and how our bodies will adapt to this contamination process. Unfortunately, velocity matters. The problem is that our bodies adaptation takes too long, so we, as humans, are in a very real risk of extintion. If you really study the process of how heavy metals (e.g., mercury, lead, cadmiun, aluminium, etc.) destroy our cells, you completely will understand the purpose of this extraordinary book.

I feel that the issue of conflicts of interest and public policy is present more than ever in our lives. In this book this issue is very well presented. It seems that not only big pharma and big industries, which main product is contamination are against us, but also big government, and big International Institucions which seems to be plagued with corrupted politicians.

Please read the book, highly recommended!!!
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