Ratings for Dr. Melvin R. Helm
I have been seeing Dr. Helm since December 2011 for my chronic migraines, having been referred by another neurologist after I told her I was leaving anyway. Dr. Helm also suffers from serious migraines. He can either be very compassionate or extremely abrupt; I assume it depends on how he is feeling. Over the course of the past 4 years, he has tried only 1 medication to prevent my migraines. He does not take my insurance any more so I pay a hefty fee out of pocket every time I see him, which is about every 3 months. My disability forms always say I am "improved" even though I may not. After 4 years on long term disability, without much improvement, he now wants me to go back to work in 6 weeks. I feel like he thinks I am trying to work the system. I am 61 years old and while I might be able to work from home if I could find something flexible enough, there is no way I can work in the public sector. Noise and lights are two of my many triggers, and I cannot take any of the pain meds he wants to give me. I know there are others but he won't prescribe them, and won't say why. It is true that he never explains anything unless you press him, and then he gives you a cursory explanation in terms you are unlikely to understand. I think he is extremely intelligent but lacks true compassion and concern for his patients. Being a headache specialist and a migraine sufferer, you would think otherwise. I think if he can't "cure" you, he has no use for you except to collect his fee. He has repeatedly told me I might have to be put on permanent disability, and yet he won't do it...I think it is because he has never really tried very hard to find a solution to my migraines. He wants me to have Botox but it isn't covered by my insurance either; at over $2,000 for the FIRST TREATMENT (and they have to be done every 3 months or so)...how can a person on disability afford that? I also think that he has recently become so involved in his extracurricular activities (outside of his private practice) that he doesn't have the time for people who aren't responding to his nominal treatment. I can almost count on every appointment I have being rescheduled because he is going to be out of the office on that day.
My friend went to Helm to get answers for the headaches he has been experiencing since he was a child. Helm took him into the room and in less than 10 minutes gave him a script to fill without any explanation. Here recently he started to get another migraine and called the office to be seen. Nobody ever called back to get him in. He suffered for 4 days in excruciating pain until he finally went to urgent care and they gave him a shot of some pain med. That didn't clear anything and AGAIN he called Helm to be seen. Still no response. So on Day 5 he went back to the Urgent Care doctor that he saw the day before, and she gave him a shot of morphine and sent him to get an MRI. Sad when an urgent care doctor takes more time and consideration than a trained specialist!!!!! Never go to this doctor!!!!
I was pleased with my experience in this office. After struggling for 20 years through seemingly endless physical therapy I saw Dr. Helm. Within minutes of a physical exam it was over. He understood the issue, and ordered tests that confirmed vestibular dysfunction.
Dr. Helm is not a good doctor and his staff is not very good either. His policies regarding refilling prescriptions are inconsistent. My wife has run out of refills and his office said there was no need for her to schedule an appointment; they would continue to refill her prescription. Now when they are due to close for the holidays they require her to come in and see him. Her migraine medicine is gone, and he cannot see her for 2 weeks now. This is not quality patient care. These sorts of things are the reason why I myself left him and am being treated by another neurologist.
This is a compassionate, highly intelligent doctor that makes the best recommendations for his patients based on clinical data. He has two Board Certifications and is highly respected in his community by peers and patients. He often lectures pro-bono to different groups of patients including the Parkinson's Support group and others. He is one of a few Headache Board Certified physicians in the state. He sustains a practice of hundreds of satisfied returning patients. I would recommend Dr. Helm without any reservations.
AVOID this doctor. He will get you in and out as quickly as possible, with no time to ask questions, and no time for him to even tell you about the medicine he is prescribing you. He did not bother to tell me that what he prescribed me would interfere with my birth control (he knew I was on it); he did not bother to tell me I could not drink on the meds (he knew I am a winemaker); he did not bother to tell me if I had an adverse reaction and had to stop taking the meds, I could start having seizures (he was leaving the next day for a 7 week vacation with no nurse or other doctor to answer questions or help with problems - I did call with questions). Furthermore, he extended his vacation OVER my follow up appointment and the front office didn't even bother to call and tell me, it happened to come up when I called to ask questions on my prescription, and when I asked why no one had contacted me, I was told they would "get around to it in a few days." Horrible professionalism.
Dr. Melvin R. Helm's Credentials
Accepting New Patients
- Univ Auto De Guadalajara, Fac De Med, Guadalajara, Jalisco, Mexico (Grad. 1994)
Areas of Expertise
Awards & Recognitions
Publications & Research