I just recently had to have neck surgery, basically I couldn't turn my head. Like you I put it off for 10 years, until I just couldn't take it any more. A very talented surgeon did the work. A great place to start is to look at the list of Drs, on your ppo. Then look them up on the web, read reviews from other patients. That's where you find out who's good or not. Patients are usually very honest, one way or another.
My surgeon Replaced the protruding and herniated discs with plastic ones, and inserted a plastic prosthesis. Looks like the outside of a writing pen, on the exray. Yes it was worth it. Had to wear a neck brace for 2 weeks, and physical therapy to rebuild strength.
Also had an epidermal, straight into the spine, for other "bad" discs. It works, but wears off after about two months. Very expensive, and an out patient procedure.
The decision obviously is yours. My thoughts are that if the nerves are pinched, it may become permanent nerve damage.
Physical therapy may also be an option. It has helped numerous people. Again expensive, but helpful. Read reviews, to find a good one.
Just like tiniray I also have spurs, found on an mri. The only real way to tell whats going on with your spine, or neck. An exray will reveal arthritis, and narrowing, an mri can tell the surgeon alot more about your condition. Most insurance companies require pre certification for these procedures, be sure to call before you go. The MRI was 4000, the surgery was big bucks$$$.
Hope this helps, If I had it to do over, I would of done it a lot sooner. :)