According to Melbourne Hand Surgery, a tuft fracture is a broken bone in the tip of the finger joint. Sometimes there is just one break, but often several bone fragments separate, MHS indicates.
The National Center for Biotechnology Information indicates that tuft fractures are the most common type of break in the hand, and they often occur on index and middle fingers or thumbs. The NCBI reports that tuft fractures are typically set without surgery. According to the NCBI, sometimes tuft fractures need a simple splint, but a cast is often not used. However, MHS points out that if the fracture is very serious, especially if a shattered nail bed is involved, an operation is sometimes necessary.