Kobe Bryant is currently in Germany to undergo the platelet-rich plasma treatment known as Orthokine on his right knee, according to a source on Sept. 3.
Bryant underwent the same therapy on his right knee in Germany in 2011.
The procedure involves removing blood from the affected area and spinning it in a centrifuge. Molecules that cause inflammatory responses are then removed to create a serum that is injected back into the affected area.
The Los Angeles Lakers said that Bryant had left the country Wednesday night to undergo an undisclosed medical procedure not related to the torn Achilles he suffered in April. Bryant is expected to return early next week according to the team.
A Lakers spokesman added that Bryant plans to have only his knee treated but will get other areas examined as well.
Bryant, 35, did not consult with Lakers coach Mike D'Antoni prior to this departure, but the coach shrugged off the development.
"I don't think it's a surprise," D'Antoni said Thursday. "I think he had it programmed, and just the way it was, he knew he had time because he's not getting on the court yet. So I don't think it's a big deal, and I don't think it caught him by surprise. Instead of doing it in August, he's doing it now.
"There's no concern whatsoever."
The Lakers haven't provided a timetable on Bryant's return from the Achilles injury other than saying in April that he would be back in six to nine months.
However, recovery from Orthokine is typically quick compared to more severe knee procedures and does not add to Bryant's recovery time from a torn Achilles' tendon, which remains the larger issue.
Until Bryant is cleared to return to action, the Lakers have a number of options at shooting guard. Free-agent signee Nick Young, who will likely also see time at small forward, and holdover Jodie Meeks the two players who are most likely to see major minutes at the two. Jordan Farmer can play both guard positions and the Lakers will also likely use Steve Nash and Steve Blake together.
In addition, the Lakers have Darius Johnson-Odom, Xavier Henry and Wesley Johnson in camp to compete for minutes at shooting guard.