A new report says California prison officials are reducing the number of times they use a procedure known as "potty watches," and are getting better results.

The process is used to recover drugs, weapons, cellphones and other contraband that inmates are believed to have swallowed or concealed in body cavities.

Suspected smugglers are severely restrained for at least 72 hours or until they complete at least three bowel movements.

The Associated Press reported in July that something was recovered from about four out of 10 inmates. Critics say that's too low a percentage for the hardship involved.

The state's inspector general reported Wednesday that the corrections department appears to be more careful in deciding when to use the procedure and is keeping inmates restrained for shorter periods of time.