Dr. Kornelis Poelstra, MD

Dr. Kornelis Poelstra, MD

Orthopedic Surgery  |  
Male  |  
44 y/o

Accepting new patients

Dr. Kornelis Poelstra, MD is an orthopedic surgery doctor who practices in Destin, FL. He is 44 years old and has been practicing for 20 years. Dr. Poelstra is affiliated with Fort Walton Beach Medical Center and Sacred Heart Hospital On the Emerald Coast.

Spine Institute on the Emerald Coast

155 Crystal Beach Dr Ste 200

Destin, FL 32541
Get Directions

Accepted insurance

  • Aetna
  • Blue Cross Blue Shield
  • Cigna
  • Coventry Health Care
  • First Health (Coventry Health Care)
  • Humana
  • Medical Mutual of Ohio
  • MultiPlan
  • Principal Financial Group
  • UnitedHealthCare

Learn about Dr. Poelstra

Be confident in your decisions by checking out your provider's top areas of care, education, patient reviews and more. Learn about finding the right doctor for you

Top Care Areas


See how frequently Dr. Poelstra performs your care needs compared to other doctors.

very high
more than 99% of peers
Spinal Reconstructive Surgery for Deformities
very high
more than 99% of peers
Low Back Pain
very high
more than 99% of peers

Dr. Poelstra's percentages are based on the rate of treatment compared to peers nationwide from insurance data. Learn more info about our data and this Top Care Areas component.

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Care Philosophy

This content was provided by Dr. Poelstra "Provide excellent care that is financially responsible and very well understood by my patients."


  • Orthopedic Surgery
  • Orthopedic Spine Surgery

Board Certifications

  • Orthopedic Surgery
    Accredited by: American Board of Medical Specialties*

Conditions Treated

  • Ankle Fracture
  • Ankylosing Spondylitis
  • Ankylosing Vertebral Hyperostosis
  • Anterior Cruciate Ligament (ACL) or Posterior Cruciate Ligament (PCL) Tear
  • Arthritis of the Elbow
  • Autoimmune Diseases
  • Back Pain
  • Baker’s Cyst
  • Bone Cancer
  • Bone Disorders
  • Broken Neck
  • Cancer
  • Cerebrospinal Fluid Leak (CSF Leak)
  • Cervical Spine Myelopathy
  • Chronic Neck Pain
  • Coccygeal Pain
  • Coccyx or Sacrum Fracture
  • Complex Regional Pain Syndrome (CRPS)
  • Degenerative Disc Disease
  • Difficulty With Walking
  • Elbow Injuries
  • Enthesopathy of Knee (incl. Bursitis of Knee)
  • Femur Fracture
  • Foot Conditions
  • Fracture
  • Ganglion Cyst
  • Hand Conditions
  • Heel Spur
  • Herniated Disc
  • Hip Fracture
  • Intervertebral Disc Disease
  • Joint Pain
  • Knee Disorders
  • Knee Sprain
  • Lateral and Medial Epicondylitis (Tennis and Golf Elbow)
  • Limb Pain
  • Low Back Pain
  • Lumbar Spine Fracture
  • Myelopathy
  • Neck Strain (incl. Whiplash Injury)
  • Nerve Root Injury and Plexus Disorders (incl. Pinched Nerve)
  • Non-Unions and Malunions of Fractures
  • Osteoarthritis
  • Osteoarthritis of Ankle and Foot
  • Osteoarthritis of Hands
  • Osteoarthritis of Hip and Thigh
  • Osteoarthritis of Shoulder
  • Osteoarthritis of Spine
  • Osteopenia
  • Osteosarcoma
  • Pathological Spine Fracture
  • Pelvic Fracture
  • Peripheral Autonomic Neuropathy
  • Peripheral Nerve Disorders
  • Post-Laminectomy Syndrome
  • Pseudoarthrosis
  • Radiculopathy (Not Due to Disc Displacement)
  • Reiter's Syndrome (Reactive Arthritis)
  • Rheumatoid Arthritis
  • Sacrum Disorders
  • Sciatica (Not Due to Disc Displacement)
  • Scoliosis
  • Secondary Malignancies
  • Shoulder Disorders
  • Spina Bifida
  • Spinal Cord Injury
  • Spinal Stenosis
  • Spine Deformities
  • Spine Disorders
  • Spine Fractures, Traumatic
  • Spondylitis
  • Spondylolisthesis
  • Sprains and Strains (incl. Muscle Tear)
  • Systemic Sclerosis
  • Thoracic Spine Fracture
  • Thoracic Spine Myelopathy
  • Vertebral Column Tumors


Read More


  • Anterior Cervical Herniated Disc Surgery With Fusion
  • Arm Surgery
  • Cervical Microdiscectomy
  • Cervical Spine Reconstruction
  • Decompression
  • Disc Replacement
  • Dressing and-or Debridement of Wound, Infection, or Burn (incl. Negative Pressure Wound Therapy)
  • Dural Repair or Other Spinal Cord Repair
  • Elbow Fracture and-or Dislocation Treatment, Closed
  • Elbow Fracture and-or Dislocation Treatment, Open
  • Excision of Scapula, Clavicle, Rib, or Sternum
  • Fracture Care
  • Herniated Disc Surgery
  • Hip Fracture and-or Dislocation Treatment, Open
  • Joint Drainage
  • Knee Surgery
  • Knee and Lower Leg Fracture Treatment, Open
  • Kyphoplasty, Percutaneous
  • Lamina Procedures (incl. Laminectomy, Laminoplasty, Laminotomy)
  • Lumbar Fusion
  • Lumbar Herniated Disc Surgery
  • Lumbar Laminectomy
  • Lumbar Microdiscectomy
  • Lumbar Sympathetic Block
  • Nerve Block, Somatic
  • Neurostimulation
  • Percutaneous Vertebroplasty
  • Peripheral Nerve Block
  • Posterior Lumbar Fusion With Robotic Assistance
  • Radiofrequency Ablation
  • Resection or Ablation of Bone Tumor, Partial or Complete Resection of Bone, Debridement of Bone
  • Scoliosis Surgery
  • Spinal Compression Fracture Repair
  • Spinal Cord Stimulation
  • Spinal Fusion
  • Spinal Nerve Block
  • Spinal Reconstructive Surgery for Deformities
  • Spine Fracture Treatment
  • Steroid Injection
  • Trigger Point Injection


Read More

Background Check

0 Malpractice Claims

No malpractice history found for Florida.

0 Sanctions

No sanctions history found for the years that Healthgrades collects data.

1 Board Action
  • Wrong-site surgery (6/15/2015)
    Action Taken: Education
    Summary: Please reference the following Document
    Documentation: Download here (PDF)
    State: Florida


  • Praedinius Gymnasium-Magnet School / Pre-Med
    Undergraduate School | Graduated 1991
  • Rijksuniversiteit Groningen, Faculty Of Medical Sciences
    Medical School | Graduated 1997
  • University of Virginia
    Internship Hospital | Completed 2000
  • University of Virginia
    Residency Hospital | Completed 2005
  • Thomas Jefferson University and The Rothman Institute Combined Neurological-And Orthopaedic Spine Surgery Fellowship-Rated #1 In The Usa
    Fellowship Hospital | Completed 2006
  • Royal University Of Groningen-Department Of Biomedical Engineering-Phd
    Other Education | Completed 2000

Awards & Recognition

Awards & Honors

Dr. Poelstra has no awards or honors listed.

Media & Publications

Languages Spoken

  • English
  • Dutch
  • German
  • Spanish

Memberships & Professional Affiliations

Dr. Poelstra does not have any memberships or affiliations listed. If you are Dr. Poelstra and would like to add memberships or affiliations, please update your profile.

Dr. Poelstra's Reviews

Likelihood of recommending Dr. Poelstra to family and friends
based on 90 total reviews (21 with comments)
Dr. Poelstra Says:

Dear patients, Thank you so much for your comments and expressions of appreciation for the care you have received. I really appreciate all your compliments to myself and my PA, Jonathan Needler and my nurse, Tracy Whitehead. This will always continue to be the driving force behind making our Spine Institute the best place to go for all of your care! Go Spine!

Dr. Poelstra's Performance
  • Trustworthiness
  • Explains condition(s) well
  • Answers Questions
  • Time well spent
Office & Staff Performance
  • Scheduling
  • Office environment
  • Staff friendliness
  • Average wait time
    10 to 15 minutes
Patient Comments (21)
in Destin, FL |
If you are looking to entrust your spine to a surgeon then look no further than Dr. Poelstra. I was terrified of having cervical fusion. I now wish I would have had the surgery done a year earlier. He has is so very kind and is extremely skilled. I had no dysphasia, felt amazing after surgery and my scar looks like it was done by a plastic surgeon! Thank you Dr. Poelstra for giving me quality of life back! I am looking forward to playing with my kids, being able to work out and being pain free!
in Niceville, FL |
Dr. Poelstra literally saved my life. He repaired a botched back surgery from another Doctor who preformed surgery in January. Dr. Poelstra did repair surgery and fixed my back and cleaned out all the infection in my back. He told me I wound not be in pain after surgery and He was right. After 8 months of pain I am now pain free and feeling great. Thank God for leading me to him and I only wish that I would have known about him prior to my first surgery. He cares about his patients and health.
in Miramar Beach Florida |
The professionalism that Dr Poelstra and his staff exemplified during my treatment and subsequent surgery, could only be considered as excellent and outstanding. Dr Poelstra and his staff made you feel that your wellbeing was most important. Professionalism at all levels. I highly recommend Dr Poelstra.
in Crestview, FL |
I have suffered for years with cervical disc issues and with the guidance and care of Dr. Poelstra and his staff I am now healing and can't thank them enough. Anyone considering surgery should undoubtedly look into the Spine Institute from pain management to surgery, they will help you every step of the way. I can't thank them enough.
Panama City Beach, FL |
He was beyond wonderful! I was only 30 when I learned that I needed a spinal fusion, and working in the healthcare field I knew I needed to find someone who truly knew what they were doing and Dr. Poelstra was the obvious choice. He was warm and caring the first time I met him and he had a great bedside personality, but more importantly, he knew what he was doing and has a good success rate for the surgery I needed. His staff was wonderful and accommodating! Can't recommend him enough!
Crestview, FL |
I suffered a combat injury about 2 1/2 years ago and as a result I have had a herniated disc in my lower back since then. The pain had gotten so bad that I couldn't sleep, it was effecting my work and I couldn't play with my kids. I was referred to Dr. Poelstra with it already set in my mind that I wanted surgery. Dr. Poelstra explained to me in detail what the surgery would entail and what to expect from the recovery. A few weeks later I went in for the surgery and when I woke up about 45 m
in Rotterdam, Netherlands |
After 8 surgeries during the last 35 years my back was a mess, I couldn't stand straight or walk and used 30 mg morfine daily. I traveled 10,000 miles to have my back fixed by dr. Poelstra. In dr. Poelstra's office hangs a painting from a patient, who believes dr. Poelstra is an angel sent by God to take care of his patients. I can only concur. After the surgery 1/14/2017 my pain was gone, I could stand and walk again. Best spinal orthopedic surgeon worldwide. And a very pleasant man.
in Mary Esther, FL |
Dr. Poelstra did my back surgery on 1 Dec 2016. He said that he could only get rid of 50% of the pain I was having from the severe spinal stenosis. I am happy to say that he got rid of 85% of the pain, maybe more! It's great to be able to get up, walk, and get things done around the house that I haven't been able to do for the last several years! Most important, I can now sit on my motorcycle and have a comfortable long ride. Thanks to you and your staff for everything! "Jake"
in Coral Springs, FL |
It is with great pleasure that I recommend Dr. Poelstra. I had been to five doctors and had three surgeries attempting to alleviate the pain associated with my spine. Dr. Poelstra was able to identify and articulate exactly what my problem was and not only what he would do to repair it, but how long it would take and what I could expect from the surgery. One of the prior surgeries I had turned out to be a full fusion of 4/5 and too k fourteen hours. As stated it took Dr. Poelstra two hours. Tks
in Navarre, FL |
My experience with Dr. Poelstra was very positive. Dr. Poelstra was very professional, technically competent and could explain the procedure I was to undergo in laymen's terms. His staff also exuded competence, compassion and approachability.
in Niceville, FL |
Dr. Poelstra performed spinal surgery on me on Feb 2, 2016. I first saw him in August 2015 barely able to walk because of back pain. After trying other pain relief measures without total success, we decided on surgery. I am walking totally without pain since April, 21/2 months after the surgery. Dr. Poelstra and staff, always explained everything to my satisfaction. They made sure my husband and I understood all their instructions; they never made us feel rushed.
in Niceville, FL |
Finally out of pain!! What a relief! Dr. Poelstra really cares for his patients and their well being. I will definitely recommend him and his team to others with spinal issues.
in Miramar Beach FL |
I never thought being normal could be something that would make me happy but after living with back pain for the last ten years I can't say enough about how great it is to be normal again. After years of living with back pain Dr. Poelstra found that I had fatty tissue growing in my spinal canal. The day after surgery I was walking pain free. The incision was small and I didn't need any pain meds, not even aspirin. I would highly recommend Dr. Poelstra to any one with spinal problems.
in Santa Rosa Beach, FL |
It really saddens me to give this review! However, Dr. Poelstra's office has clearly gone from providing quality care to only being interested in quantity of care! I'm so disappointed in how the service at the Destin office has deteriorated! You can't even get people to call you back! Then you get people like, Nicole Porter to finally answer the phone and then she speaks to you in a condescending tone! Thanks to your office I have been left in pain, in debt, and lost all trust in anyone from you
Destin, FL |
I have had the opportunity to be in Dr. Poelstra's presence on many occasions. From a standpoint not completely patient based, I have been able to see the love he has for his family, patients and employees. This gentleman truly loves to help people. He puts his entire heart into his work. I would highly recommend him to anyone needing health care. He is not only experienced beyond the normal expectations of his field, but he has an innate desire to help others.
in Navarre, FL |
I was referred to Dr. Poelstra by my physical therapist after being misdiagnosed for 2 years. Dr. Poelstra and his staff had me diagnosed and surgery complete within 2 months of seeing him. The staff is awesome and the whole procedure was easy. I am now 8 weeks post surgery and run 3 miles 4-5 days a week with general calisthenics.
in Panama City Beach, FL |
I had spine surgery a year and half ago by a neurosurgeon in Gulf Breeze. I continued to have terrible pain. My primary care physician recommended Dr. Poelstra and I am so glad that she did. Dr. Poelstra corrected my previous surgery two months ago and I am almost totally pain free. He has saved my sanity! His office staff are all the greatest especially his Nurse Practitioner Anna Braun. I was fortunate to have Dr. Poelstra correct the problems with my spine. My husband says so too!!
in Freeport, FL |
Excellent provider. Very skilled and compassionate.
in Fort Walton Beach, FL |
This one's easy. The man had a hand in saving my life!!! He's the best!!! He removed 3 busted up bones from my neck and then fused my cervical from C4-7. He is kind and honest and cares!! A true diamond! So so so gifted and skilled. Use this professional neurosurgeon today. Right now!!
in Santa Rosa Beach, FL |
Dr. Poelstra and his staff were amazing! I highly, highly recommend. This was my best medical experience ever. I ended up feeling like these folks have become my friends. Top notch!
in Miramar Beach, FL |
Dr Poelstra is the best there is. I had surgery in January and felt almost instant relief. Not only is he an excellent Surgeon he is so kind and makes you feel like you are his only patient. I would highly recommend him to ANYONE! They don't make doctors like him anymore. My wife and I feel very lucky to have found him. Sincerely, J.F. Badessi M.D.
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Now Accepting New Patients
Dr. Poelstra accepts 10 insurance carriers
  • Aetna
    Choice Plus POS II
  • Blue Cross Blue Shield
    Blue Card PPO
  • Cigna
    Great West Healthcare-Cigna PPO
  • Coventry Health Care
    Group Plan PPO
  • First Health (Coventry Health Care)
    First Health (Coventry Health Care) PPO
  • Humana
    Choice Care PPO
  • Medical Mutual of Ohio
  • MultiPlan
    MultiPlan PPO
    PHCS Network PPO
  • Principal Financial Group
  • UnitedHealthCare
    Choice Plus POS
    Options PPO

*Please verify this information when scheduling an appointment.

Hospitals where Dr. Poelstra has admitting privileges

Fort Walton Beach Medical Center
1000 Mar Walt Dr
Fort Walton Beach, FL 32547
View Hospital Profile
Sacred Heart Hospital On the Emerald Coast
7800 US Highway 98 W
Miramar Beach, FL 32550
View Hospital Profile