Jennifer, I have been thinking about your post and appreciate it, as well the links that you included. I am glad that surgery was a good solution for you and your pain is alleviated. I have a very solid diagnosis of spondylolisthesis (Grade 3) from quite a few doctors. I am an ex athlete, so it stands to reason. Like you, I have kept off the operating table thus far because I exercise daily. It's just that it's getting harder and harder to cope. I am definitely not a smoker. The surgeon whom I am considering is Andrew Metzger M.D. He operates on spines and brains. His bio seems highly qualified and he is in private practice. I did appeal to his office to ask to be put in touch with patients he has done the procedure on but I did not receive a reply. I think I will try again. I was also considering a neurosurgeon at Baylor University. However, after talking to someone who had the surgery I thought it would be less complicated if I had the surgery in the city I live (Albuquerque). But yes, finding someone who is most qualified is of upmost importance. As far as getting ahold of research papers..that is a good idea. Not sure how to do it other then googling his name and hope some links pop up? Thank you again for your input.