Re: confused about diagnosis and treatment
First, please get several opinions before proceeding. I don't feel comfortable telling you how severe the cord compression is. It's not that having a laminectomy in the thoracic level is less common. All surgery in the thoracic level is done less often than either cervical or lumbar surgery.
Fewer problems arise in the thoracic area due to the fact that it is not subject to a lot of movement. And, it is much more difficult to operate on due to the ribs, etc.
I would normally suggest that a patient needs to be careful having multiple laminectomies as the lamina is needed to provide support. When too much bone is cut away, the spine can become unstable and there is more room for a nerve to get "pinched." Sometimes a patient can get away with having two adjoining levels surgically altered, but more than that can be problematic.
However, this may not hold true in the thoracic spine as it is designed to be fairly stationary anyway.
Until you know that the cord compression is not severe, if I were in your position I would consider it something that needs attention as quickly as you can arrange appointments. I would get an opinion from at least one orthopedic spine surgeon. Their training (with a spine fellowship) is similar to a neurosurgeon's and sometimes will approach things slightly differently.
I can give you two names of ortho spine surgeons to check out. You have many to choose from in the Seattle area, what with the UW faculty and their spine clinic and I believe there is another large orthopedic clinic there, too. It depends what you like. Anyway, the names are Andelle Teng and ...I'll have to get back to you with another name. I can't think of it at the moment!
In case you are not familiar, an ortho spine surgeon is not the same as a sports medicine doc or a regular orthopedic doctor...so be sure you are choosing a fellowship-trained orthopedic spine doctor...someone who limits his practice to the neck and back.