I had cervical spine surgery in 2012 at Johns Hopkins (great doctors, and the hospital is fantastic!). Surgeon was up front that it would slow the progression, but there is no cure. They also worked with dieticians and therapists to make sure that I was as strong g as I could be before surgery. (I was 65 with COPD and neuropathy). I had 9 good years, then did a du.b thing and started smoking again, which kicked both my cervical and lumbar SS back into high gear. All in all my doctors were amazed how well I bounced back from the 9 hour surgery. I am so lucky in my pain levels, mostly it ramps up when I am active and get very fatigued. Make sure your doctors are on board with you doing therapy and eating well so you can be strong. Some doctors see you as a number, and couldn't care less what you have been doing to get stronger, just keep looking until you find one you connect with, and trust.