The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) estimates that there are almost 20 million new cases of sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) each year. STD infections can persist for an extended period of time, and most people are not aware they are infected until advanced symptoms appear. According to a recent CDC study, “STD screening is critical” in effectively stemming their spread. It’s also the first step toward getting successful treatment.
STDcheck is revolutionizing the way STD testing is done, much like Amazon Prime has done for online shopping. It’s fast, convenient, and high-quality (and very private to boot), so it is now easier than ever to screen yourself for STDs.
- STDcheck offers the most discreet STD testing available–you do not even have to give your name if you do not want to.
- All STDcheck tests are FDA-approved, and all labs are CLIA-certified.
- Tests are 99% accurate.
- Industry-leading customer support and the fastest turnaround times available (including same-day testing).
- Over 4,500 testing centers nationwide. Chances are high that there is a center very close to your home.
- STDcheck offers the HIV RNA early detection test.
- STDcheck accepts FSA and HSA payment cards.
- STDcheck does not currently accept health insurance (which happens to also increase your privacy).
- Only available within the United States, and certain areas lack testing centers.
- There are a few STDs that STDcheck does not test for, including mycoplasma genitalium and trichomoniasis.
If you want to test for STDs in a manner that is extremely discreet, convenient, cost-effective, and safe, then STDcheck should be near the top of your list. We are confident that you will not be disappointed.
With over 4,500 testing centers nationwide, STDcheck provides a logical alternative to inconvenient doctor visits and at-home test kits.
STDcheck specializes in STD testing ,and it does it well. The company receives very high ratings in terms of Value, Accuracy, Privacy, and Customer Support.
Innerbody recently celebrated its 20-year anniversary online. Over the past two decades, we have helped tens of millions of readers make informed decisions involving staying healthy and living healthier lifestyles. Our testing team has purchased and compared over 500 health-related tests to date, and we are constantly updating our reviews based on the latest test advances.
This review, like all medical-related content on Innerbody, is thoroughly vetted by one or more members of our Medical Review Board for accuracy. Additionally, we extensively analyze each health testing service we review. We evaluate the entire experience from ordering to receiving results, and then offer unbiased, marketing-jargon-free analysis based on the latest scientific evidence and medical standards.
The STDcheck testing process is very straight forward and is as follows:
Step 1 - Order Your STD Test
Simply go to the STDcheck.com website and select which individual tests or test packages you want to order. All of these tests are FDA-approved.
Keep reading for our recommendations on which tests you might want to consider.
Step 2: Choose a Test Center
Enter your zip code or let the website search your location via GPS. The advanced matching system will show you a list of all the nearest testing centers. Select the center that is most convenient for you.
You will then be asked to give some optional personal information, such as your name, gender, date of birth, etc., along with your preferred method of payment and how you want to receive your test results.
Finally, you will be given a personal test code to write down.
Step 3: Visit Test Center
There is no need for an appointment. Just show up to your local test center. We find the lab centers are mostly open during normal business hours, though some are open on weekends.
Make sure to bring your personal test code. Otherwise, the lab will not know which test results are yours. Also note that the test centers do not accept payments. All payments must be made online.
The entire test usually takes only around five minutes.
Step 4: Receive Your Results
You should expect STDcheck to send your test results back to you within only one or two working days (though we find most users get their results back in less than 24 hours). This is among the fastest turnaround times available.
You can choose to receive your results via text or email. You can also opt to call in to receive your results (this is an especially convenient option if you share a phone or email account with someone).
Step 5: Consult With Doctor (Only If Positive Result Received)
If you test positive, you are strongly encouraged to set up a free consultation with a doctor. The doctor will be able to answer any questions you have and write you a prescription if necessary.
If you tested positive, you can contact the company’s Care Advisors at any time, and they will answer any question you might have in regard to your testing results. You can then schedule a free consultation with a doctor and ask for a prescription if necessary. In some cases, the doctor can refer you to a specialist for further management.
Step 6 (Optional): Send Anonymous Notifications
One additional feature that is unique to STDcheck is the ability to send 100% anonymous notifications to your partner(s) alerting them about the positive result. It will just advise them that they might also want to take a test.
STDcheck currently tests for many different STDs, including:
- Hepatitis A
- HIV (I & II)
- Hepatitis B
- HIV RNA Early Detection
- Herpes (I & II)
- Hepatitis C
The company is different from other testing providers in that it allows test takers to customize exactly which STDs they want to test for. You can go down a checkbox menu and add any or all individual tests you like. No matter how many STDs you select, you will only have to visit the testing center once. This a la carte style of testing can be a very economical option if you sense that you have been exposed to, or are experiencing the symptoms of, a specific STD.
Most test takers, however, have no idea which STDs they may or may not have and are looking for one comprehensive STD test. For these people, STDcheck offers a test package with a catchy name: the 10 Test Panel [see latest price]. This single test is for, you guessed it, all 10 of the STDs STDcheck tests for. What we like most about this test is that you can save up to 60% buying this all-inclusive package, as compared to the cost of purchasing all the single tests individually. We feel that this is a tremendous value and is likely the best test for most people.
Do I need a doctor's prescription or any exam in order to test?
Nope! All you need to do is order the test.
If I'm concerned about recent sexual activity, when should I get tested?
If it’s been a while, then there’s no better time than the present - order a test now. And if you’re noticing any kind of potential symptom - like pain while urinating, or odd rashes or bumps, or any kind of pain or discharge - get tested immediately.
It is true that different STDs have different incubation periods (the immediate period of time during which a test could fail to detect that you’ve got an STD). But if you’re at all concerned, then the time to get tested is now - always now. You can and should re-test later, and it’s important to keep in mind that if you’re at risk for one STD, you’re probably at risk for the rest. Chlamydia and gonorrhea both are detectable via testing after 7 days for sure. So, to be safest, obviously use protection but also get tested comprehensively and routinely.
Here’s a handy chart of incubation periods for reference.
|Incubation period||Need to retest after positive result?||If need to retest after positive result, when?|
|Chlamydia||1-5 days||2 weeks after completing treatment|
|Gonorrhea||2-6 days||2 weeks after completing treatment|
|Syphilis||3-6 weeks||3 months after completing treatment|
|Hep A||2-7 weeks (28 days avg)|
|Hep B||6 weeks|
|Hep C||8-9 weeks||3 months later to double-check the first results|
|Oral herpes||4-6 weeks|
|Genital herpes||4-6 weeks|
|HIV (antibody test)||1-3 months|
|HIV (RNA test)||9-11 days|
Do I need to get retested at some point after testing positive?
Whether and when you retest depends on which STD we’re talking about. See the incubation chart above for more information. Your consulting physician will also have advice to follow.
Can I get multiple STDs at the same time?
Yes - actually some infections make you more susceptible to get additional STDs simultaneously. This is another reason to test more comprehensively rather than less.
How frequently should I get tested?
If you’ve already tested positive for certain STDs and gotten treatment, you’ll want to re-test at a certain time following treatment (see the chart above).
We should all get tested routinely, but the recommended ‘bare minimum’ testing routines can vary based on who we are. The CDC offers information based on various populations, and below we’ll summarize their advice in a chart. All sexually active people should be tested AT LEAST yearly. Depending on your activity, you should get tested more often.
Here are the suggestions for testing at a bare minimum. (Emphasis on BARE MINIMUM!)
|How often to get tested at the very least?||CDC recommends at least the following tests:|
|All sexually active people||Yearly||HIV|
|Sexually active women age <25||Yearly||Gonorrhea and chlamydia|
|Women age >25 with multiple partners or at-risk/infected partner||Yearly||Gonorrhea and chlamydia|
|Pregnant women||Early in pregnancy and periodically throughout||Syphilis, HIV, hep B|
|Sexually active gay and bisexual men||Yearly||Syphilis, chlamydia, gonorrhea, HIV|
|Sexually active gay and bisexual men with multiple partners||Every 3-6 months||Syphilis, chlamydia, gonorrhea, HIV|
If you’re experiencing any symptoms or noticing anything odd - like pain while urinating, or odd rashes or bumps, or any kind of pain or discharge - then you should get tested immediately, rather than waiting for any kind of routine, scheduled testing.
And don’t forget: it never hurts to get tested more frequently. There are reasons why even monogamous couples should get tested at least each year. This is one of those situations where you’re better off erring on the side of doing more rather than less.
Can I get the same STD again in the future, even after treatment?
Yes. Successful treatment doesn’t prevent you from being re-infected in the future. Also, it’s very important to finish your treatment; otherwise, you may never successfully get rid of the original infection. Lastly (with the exceptions of hepatitis A and B, herpes I and II, and HIV) make sure to retest at the recommended time after completing treatment, in order to confirm that you’ve gotten rid of the STD.
STDcheck is highly committed to protecting your privacy. Test results are only accessible to you. STDcheck bases its privacy standards and requirements on the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA), and uses HIPAA web security protocols and data storage systems.
With STDcheck, you don’t even need to provide a name as you order your testing. When you go into a local lab for the test, the lab workers do not know anything about the nature of your test; these labs test for many different things. If you talk to a live customer representative about questions later, there is no way for them to know what test you took. And because no insurance is involved, nobody else knows anything about the tests you took, either.
At every step in the process, we believe STDcheck is the most discreet, private route that you can take to test for STDs.
At the moment, STDcheck accepts FSA and HSA payment cards. To pay using one of these cards, select your product and proceed to the checkout as normal, and enter your FSA/HSA card number as you would a regular credit card. There is no guarantee that your card will be accepted, due to the various types of regulations attached to different cards. If you’re having trouble using your FSA/HSA card, STDcheck provides an email address on its website that you can contact for advice. However, STDcheck does not accept payment via health insurance providers. While the lack of this payment option may be annoying, it does allow STDcheck to give you a higher level of privacy, as your test results and information won’t be shared with your insurance company and won’t appear on your medical records.
We customize our evaluation criteria depending on the type and nature of the health-related test. For most STDcheck tests, we have five areas that we use for our evaluations, including:
Accuracy: Do the testing labs use the latest and most accurate testing technologies available? How accurate are the tests compared to alternatives?
Value: Are you getting your money’s worth? Are there any hidden costs or charges? Does the test provider offer discounts to our readers?
Customer Support: How well does the testing company help you choose the best test? How clearly are the results presented? How well does the testing company help you understand results and get treatment if necessary?
Privacy: Will your data be stored securely? Could your data ever be shared without your permission?
Test Results Speed: How fast will you receive your test results from the moment you click “buy?” Are the waiting times stated by the testing companies accurate and consistent?