Good morning Skeye and Rosie,
Welcome to the MS board. You both sound like you have some significant problems. I am very sorry to hear that and I hope you are feeling better soon. Skeye, has anyone said Optic Neuritis to you? If they have, you might benefit from a course of solumedrol. Solumedrol is a course of IV steroids. I have had mine done at home so it does not necessarily mean a hospital stay. It depends upon your insurance of course. MS eye issues often respond to the solumedrol.
Rosie, I was diagnosed by a non-MS neurologist. He then referred me to an MS specialist who confirmed his diagnosis. You can get diagnosed by a competent neuroligst. You definitely need an explanation for the lesions. There are many things that can cause lesion besides MS.
This site has really good info on the diagnostic proceedure of MS. By the way, I have never heard of the "MS family" or variants of MS. What does your doctor mean by that?
The National MS Society is an excellent resource. They are very willing to discuss any issues you may have. Good luck to you both and I truly hope you get some answers to your medical questions very soon. I also hope that you do NOT have MS and that you have something easily treatable.