The 83-year-old ruling emir of Kuwait has flown to the United States for medical checks, state-run media report, just months after he ascended the throne.
State-run KUNA news agency described the purpose of Sheikh Nawaf Al Ahmad Al Sabah's visit to the US as "the usual medical check-ups" without elaborating.
Given his age, Sheikh Nawaf's medical trip raises concerns over his health condition, of which little is known.
State-run news previously reported that he travelled to Germany for back surgery in 2013 and years later to the US for medical tests.
After his predecessor Sheikh Sabah Al Ahmad Al Sabah fell ill last northern summer, a US Air Force C-17 flying hospital ferried him to Rochester, Minnesota, home of the flagship campus of the Mayo Clinic, where he later died.
The dramatic airlift reflected the close ties between the two countries.
Over the years, Kuwait's rulers have routinely visited US hospitals.
Sheikh Nawaf's trip comes just days after the country's prime minister appointed a new government amid deepening deadlock with parliament, which has been a first major challenge to the emir.
The sheikhdom faces a series of mounting crises including a surge in coronavirus infections and its worst liquidity crunch in decades.
Kuwait has been a staunch US ally since the 1991 Gulf War expelled the occupying Iraqi forces.
Australian Associated Press