Local 12: Researchers expand robotic pet therapy study

UC team now exploring effectiveness of interventions for long-haul COVID-19 patients

University of Cincinnati researchers are expanding a study examining how art therapy and pet robots affect the mood of patients.

The study began with a focus on patients who had suffered hearing loss as a result of a vestibular schwannoma, which are benign tumors on nerves leading from the inner ear to the brain.

Now, the pet robot and art therapy interventions are being introduced to patients suffering from long-haul COVID-19. These patients often have a persisting loss of the sense of smell, which could cause feelings of depression or anxiety similar to patients who have suffered hearing loss.

Watch the Local 12 report.

Featured photo at top of Sankhya Jejurikar holding pet robot. Photo/Ravenna Rutledge/University of Cincinnati.