When Bryana Hayes and her wife, Katie, were ready to start a family, they wanted to find a doctor who specialized in fertility treatments. Friends told them about Robert Collins, MD, reproductive endocrinologist with UPMC Magee-Womens Center for Fertility and Reproductive Endocrinology in Hermitage. It turned out to be a great fit.

“After our consult with Dr. Collins, we felt comfortable and confident he could help us start a family,” says Bryana, a radiation therapist with UPMC Hillman Cancer Center in Erie. “We highly recommend Dr. Collins and his team. We were able to conceive our daughters through two successful rounds of IVF. Dr. Collins and his staff are very thorough and knowledgeable. They answered every question and guided us through this process.”

For her first pregnancy, Bryana first underwent four rounds of intrauterine insemination (IUI). Unfortunately, they did not result in pregnancy. Ultrasounds to prepare for invitro fertilization (IVF) revealed that Bryana had uterine polyps. Dr. Collins surgically removed the polyps. Bryana was able to proceed with IVF, which led to a successful pregnancy.

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Welcoming An Addition

Dr. Collins referred Bryana to Saima Ashraf, MD, obstetrician and gynecologist at Magee-Womens, UPMC Hamot, who helped them welcome their daughter, Gianna, in January 2019.

“We trusted Dr Collins’ referral of Dr. Ashraf, and we were so happy with our decision,” Bryana says. “She was compassionate and always took time to answer any questions. We were lucky to have her deliver both of our daughters.”

In March 2020, Bryana underwent another round of IVF to conceive their second daughter, Mia, now 1. “Then the world shut down a week and a half later,” she says. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Bryana had to go to many of her appointments alone, without Katie. Bryana’s pregnancy went smoothly, and Mia was born in November 2020.


Looking Back on the Journey

“Getting pregnant was a long, sometimes rough journey. Dr. Collins and his staff made it so much better,” Bryana says. “Our nurses Vanessa, Danielle, and Leah were amazing — they walked us through every obstacle. Miranda and Chris were professional and caring during our many ultrasounds. Dr. Collins’ calm demeanor put us at ease. Chris at the front desk and everyone we met along the way always greeted us with a smile on their faces. The whole team shared in our excitement both times we found out we were pregnant!”

Bryana says it is difficult to put into words how grateful she and Katie are for everyone who cared for them at UPMC Magee-Womens Center for Fertility and Reproductive Endocrinology.

“It was a very emotional journey. They were there for us every step of the way, through all the ups and downs,” Bryana says. “We are blessed with two incredible daughters, Gianna and Mia. It wouldn’t have been possible without Dr. Collins and his amazing staff. We are forever grateful for every single one of them. I hope they know how much of a positive impact they have on their patients every single day.”

Editor's Note: This article was originally published on , and was last reviewed on .

About UPMC Magee-Womens Hospital

For more than a century, UPMC Magee-Womens Hospital has provided high-quality medical care to women at all stages of life. UPMC Magee is long-renowned for its services to women and babies but also offers a wide range of care to men as well. Our patient-first approach ensures you and your loved ones get the care you need. Nearly 10,000 babies are born each year at Magee, and our NICU is one of the largest in the country. Our network of care – from imaging centers to hospital services – provides care throughout Pennsylvania and Maryland, giving you a chance to get the expert care you need close to home. The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services recognizes UPMC Magee as a National Center of Excellence in Women’s Health, and the Magee-Womens Research Institute is the largest research institute in the U.S. devoted exclusively to women’s health and reproductive biology.