Hi and welcome to the Chiari forum. This May I will be 10 years post op....it's amazing how much time has passed and what changes I have had since. Surgery is not a cure or a fix and it is VERY IMPORTANT that ALL related conditions are ruled out PRIOR to having surgery.
MAY I ask why they feel surgery is needed?
Many Drs are willing to do surgery , but do not look at the entire picture, so make sure you have a true Chiari specialist.
Once you have the right Dr, things will fall into place and your fears relieved.