So, about 6 months ago I woke up with some odd pain in my right foot. Felt like it was asleep, and began tingling which quickly became incredibly painful. Thereafter, depending on how I walked certain toes would flare up in agony, or be OK. You should have seen the drunken sailor's rolling gate I developed. This continued for days, only abating slightly over two weeks.
I finally broke down and saw my doctor. She had no idea, but thought there could be some nerve damage. That sent me on to the neurologist who poked, prodded and shocked me. And he found nothing. His comment was . . . it's your shoes.
Apparently, he had a resident who'd hiked Kilimanjaro and come back without any feeling in the first two toes of each foot. After going to new shoes the problem eventually disappeared.
In my case I'd been wearing a new pair of Oboz for a couple of weeks when the problem started. Taking the doctor's advice, I switched to some New Balance, traditionally my favorite brand. The pain lessened over the next week, but didn't vanish. So, I then hopped into some Merrell's. Again, a little improvement.
It's now been 4 months since I started going through shoes. Although my foot is greatly improved, I still have occasional flareups, and it's permanently bordering on that 'asleep tingling' feeling. None as acute as in the first week. Much to my UltraLight loving dismay, I've found that the best trail footwear for me now is the classic mid cut hiking boot. As a matter of fact, that's the best daily footwear as well.
The moral of the story . . . be very careful about your footwear. Even if it seems to fit right, take care to be sure. My doctor is pretty sure I may be on the 'permanent' problem list now.
But I'm still getting out. ;-)