Here is what I found on pub med( one on nondisposable BP cuffs and one on disposable BP cuffs):
Blood pressure cuff as a potential vector of pathogenic microorganisms: a prospective study in a teaching hospital.
de Gialluly C, Morange V, de Gialluly E, Loulergue J, van der Mee N, Quentin R.
Laboratory of Microbiology and Hospital Hygiene, University Hospital, Tours, France. firstname.lastname@example.org
OBJECTIVE: To investigate the potential role of blood pressure (BP) cuffs in the spread of bacterial infections in hospitals. DESIGN: A comprehensive, prospective study quantitatively and qualitatively evaluating the bacterial contamination on BP cuffs of 203 sphygmomanometers in use in 18 hospital units from January through March 2003. SETTING: A university hospital with surgical, medical, and pediatric units. RESULTS: A level of contamination reaching 100 or more colony-forming units per 25 cm(2) was observed on 92 (45%) of inner sides and 46 (23%) of outer sides of 203 cuffs. The highest rates of contamination occurred on the inner side of BP cuffs kept in intensive care units (ICUs) (20 [83%] of 24) or on nurses' trolleys (27 [77%] of 35). None of the 18 BP cuffs presumed to be clean (ie, those that had not been used since the last decontamination procedure) had a high level of contamination. Potentially pathogenic microorganisms were isolated from 27 (13%) of the 203 BP cuffs: 20 of these microorganisms were Staphylococcus aureus, including 9 methicillin-resistant strains. The highest rates of contamination with potentially pathogenic microorganisms were observed on cuffs used in ICUs and those kept on nurses' trolleys. For 4 patients with a personal sphygmomanometer, a genetic link was found between the strains isolated from the BP cuffs and the strains isolated from the patients. CONCLUSIONS: The results of this survey highlight the importance of recognizing BP cuffs as potential vectors of pathogenic bacteria among patients and as a source of reinfection when dedicated to a single patient, emphasizing the urgent need for validated procedures for their use and maintenance.
AANA J. 1997 Feb;65(1):28.
Nondisposable sphygmomanometer cuffs harbor frequent bacterial colonization and significant contamination by organic and inorganic matter.
University of Cincinnati College of Nursing and Health, Ohio, USA.
In the hurried milieu of operating rooms, emergency departments, and intensive care units, contaminated sphygmomanometers (blood pressure cuffs) may not be routinely sanitized or replaced with clean cuffs between patient use. Previous investigations, though few in number, have identified blood pressure cuffs as potential sources of nosocomial infection or vehicles for transmission of contagion in selected patient populations. In this study, presumed "clean" blood pressure cuffs were cultured and evaluated for organismal proliferation and contamination by organic and inorganic debris. Results indicated that frequent bacterial colonization and soiling with organic and inorganic substances did occur on "clean" blood pressure cuffs. Although risk of disease transmission was not measured, the need for better sanitation and disinfection of the cuffs between patient use became evident.